Frequently asked questions

We have compiled answers to some of the key questions asked through our support channels to help make your virtual visits as simple as possible.

How do I find out if the ICU my family member is in is supported by Life Lines?  

Our list of NHS organisations who have been supported by Life Lines . We recommend you get in touch with your relevant NHS organisation to guarantee they are still offering virtual visits. 

Who do I contact to set up a virtual visit with a patient in an ICU supported by Life Lines? 

Virtual visiting is managed by the ICU within the hospital site. Please contact your relevant NHS organisation to check it is supported by Life Lines. If the hospital is supported by Life Lines, contact the ICU and they will be able to help you get set up for virtual visiting. 

How do I set up the AtouchAway app on my device? 

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

  1. Please go to your app store and download Aetonix aTouchAway app on your smart phone or tablet. The app is available for both iOS and Android.  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. 

What do I do if I am outside of the UK?  

To be able to connect to somebody in the UK network, you will have to create an account selecting the UK network. The steps are as follows: 

  1. Log out of the account by going to Account Menu (top-left corner) > Logout
  2. In the Welcome to aTouchAway screen, click Change Region at the bottom, and select United Kingdom and click OK in the welcome message
  3. Click on Create yourself an account  
  4. Complete the registration form and click on Register. 
  5. Log in to aTouchAway with the new UK account. 

NOTE: If you have previously registered but not selected the UK network, you can use the same email address, but it’s not necessary. As long as you have the email address you used to register in the UK network, you will be able to connect through that account.  

 Can I (as a family member) initiate a video call via atouchaway to my loved one’s bedside? 

The settings are such that audio and video functions may only be initiated by the ICU/ward team, not by the family member. 

Will I get the opportunity to speak to a clinician? 

a clinician will host your video call and explain aspects of care given and equipment around the bedside, however the virtual visit is not intended to replace an update with the clinical team about your loved one’s medical condition. 

How long can my virtual visit be?  

Though virtual visits are not given an exact time limit, we do ask you to respect that ICU clinicians are extremely busy caring for patients and that virtual visits should be kept under 20 minutes. 

Are virtual visits suitable for all family members to join? 

You will be briefed by the clinician at the beginning of the call that your loved one may be sedated and surrounded by machines. It is worth taking this into consideration prior to your virtual visits as some may find it distressing to see a loved one like this, particularly young children.  

Is my data secure when using the ATouchAway app? 

aTouchAway™ is a digitally secure platform hosted on a dedicated UK server. The only patient data that is stored is the patient’s name; this is permanently removed when the patient is discharged from hospital. The tablets are all PIN and password protected. 

For more information on this, visit the About Life Lines page

When is my loved ones’ data removed from the system? 

Clinicals will delete the patient data that is stored (patient’s name only) as soon as they have been discharged from the intensive care unit. 

For more information on this, visit the About Life Lines page