In conversation with:

-Philip Daffas, CEO and Managing Director, PainChek

-Suzanne Mumford, Head of Nursing, Care & Dementia, Care UK

-Cheryl Baird, Director of Quality & Care

– Louis Holmes, Senior Policy Adviser, Care England.

Louis Holmes, Senior Policy Advisor at Care England says care providers should consider three key questions when looking at introducing new technology into their organisation. These are:

    • How does the technology benefit the service users?
    • How does the technology benefit the organisation?
    • How does the technology benefit the sector?

There are plenty of examples now of how technology can improve care quality across the sector. As the sector continues down this path of digitisation, we can now look closer at the role of integrations between systems to create a joined-up ecosystem of care. By having this interoperability between systems, the sector gains an ability to becomes preventative in their interventions and predict likely outcomes for residents.

An example given here is looking at the mood and behaviours in people living with dementia. For example, a care provider looking at what the catalyst of a good day for a resident was, and therefore being aware and incorporating that certain activity more in their day-to-day living. And similarly, what is driving a person’s distress response and how can that be mitigated moving forward?

The group does however address the elephant in the room. Funding. Some providers are in a better position than others when it comes to their ability to digitise which is often down to their private/local authority mix and the lack of central support from government to support providers in the adoption of new tech.

On this matter, Louis Holmes said,

“Funding is the main thing you need to resolve and then on top of that there are issues of culture and collaboration. We are starting to see the government slowly understand the need to work collaboratively with providers, however, they just want to do it really quickly. There needs to be more of an understanding of interoperability which we have already spoken about but how can you implement new technologies without adequate funding? It’s just impossible. If we can get the funding right, the longer term future looks positive. We are seeing investment and the White Paper released in December had great digital focus. There is a big drive forward to adopt tech in social care. It’s a good time to be in social care because although we have been hit massively by COVID we always bounce back and it’s going to be exciting over the next 5-10 years.”

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