Information for families

Life Lines aims to ease the huge psychological burden that families are facing during this unprecedented time of separation from critically ill loved ones.

How it works:

The Life Lines project allows family to see and speak to their loved ones via a tablet using an App on the secure online platform, aTouchAway™.

Life Lines also provides families with the opportunity to meet the clinical team providing care, ask questions, and better understand the environment where they are being treated. We know it can be very distressing for families and friends not to be able to see their loved one when critically ill and especially at the end of their lives. Life Lines can keep families connected to the ICU during these distressing times.

As of 27 April 2020, more than 1000 tablets, preloaded with the aTouchAway™ app, have been delivered to ICUs across the UK The full list of locations is available for you to see if your local NHS organisation is supported by Life Lines. These tablets allow teams working in ICUs to help families who are missing their loved ones at this difficult time.

Families can download the app from the App or Android store (mobile devices) (search for aTouchaway™) or from the Aetonix website for PC or Mac, with the help of the videos and instructions below.

How to set up a video visit with the ICU or ward team

If you have a relative in ICU, the team on the ward can set you up for video visitation. If the team have your correct email address, you just need to carry out a few simple steps to get started:

  1. Life Lines aTouchAway setupPlease go to your app store and download Aetonix aTouchAway app on your smart phone or tablet. If you are using a PC, download aTouchAway
  2. Click Create yourself an account and follow instructions to register. You will need an email address.
  3. Once signed in, there will be a contact request on the home page that you need to accept
  4. You are now linked as a contact for the named patient.

How your family can communicate with the ICU ward/team

  1. You and your family members can sign into the aTouchAway™ App on your smartphone or desktop/Mac using the email and password you have set up
  2. The settings are such that audio and video functions may only be initiated by the ICU/ward team, not by the family member
  3. aTouchAway™ is a digitally secure platform and the system is password protected to ensure both family and patient data is kept completely safe. To read more about the security, privacy and information governance of the project, visit our About us Life Lines page

What’s next for Life Lines?

With more than 1000 4G-enabled, ruggedised tablets (enclosed in a protective case and wipeable) already in ICUs across 140 hopsitals, the Life Lines project is expanding on a daily basis.

Tablet supplies will continue to match demand with the help of more donations to Life Lines. As tablet supplies continue to match demand, we hope to make video visitations a possibility for families across the UK.

If you want to learn more about how you can help, visit our donations page.