Technology is changing the way we provide care and treatment. It’s an ever-increasing presence in our daily lives. And yet, the one generation which has missed the revolutionary boat is perhaps the most in need of it: the elderly.
The benefits of technology in care homes can be huge; supporting residents to be more independent, capturing valuable data, meeting outstanding CQC standards and generally improving the overall quality of care. Here’s more about the advantages it brings.
- Share Information Seamlessly
- Support Effective Communication
- Allow for More Resident-Centred Care
- Prevents Isolation and Resident Loneliness
1. Share Information Seamlessly
Investing in technology that can replace the amounts of paperwork carers often have to deal with allows for more time to be spent with residents - and less time spent at a desk. A system like this requires fast and stable WiFi to function, so ensure you have this in place before investing in any electronic file management systems.
Using technology, staff can access digital care plans and records more easily. They can record information in real-time which can be quickly and accurately shared appropriately to help keep people safe. It can also be used to highlight key information, such as up-to-date medical and allergy information.
Staff can access digital care plans and records more easily. They can record information in real-time which can be quickly and accurately shared to help keep people safe. It can also be used to highlight key information, such as up-to-date medical and allergy information.
It enables providers to be more proactive and responsive to changing needs by helping to identify developing risks or needs more quickly. The data can be anonymised, collected, shared, compared and analysed to identify risks and themes, providing a bigger picture for the whole of care.
2. Support Effective Communication
Staff can share digital records more easily and quickly when leveraging technology. Using accessible handheld devices, staff can keep an accurate record of support given as it happens. This avoids having to complete tedious paper records that make communicating these events a challenge.
With technology and intelligent platforms, residents and their families can access and contribute to the information that is important to them. They can also communicate with those involved in their care and treatment.
You can even utilise the existing hardware you already have available, such as tablets and laptops. With electronic data, it’s also easier to share data between care home and hospital, so records can be kept up-to-date and a resident’s doctor can be notified of their patients’ health changes flawlessly.
We recognise not all patients in care homes have their own personal digital devices. This means doubling down on technology to ensure that care homes can provide that access. It’s becoming even more important to close the widening digital divide.
When it comes to communicating with residents, technology enables the disadvantaged to be involved with their care plan and get the support they need. For hard of hearing residents or those with poor vision, speech recognition technology can be used to understand their requests and what they require to feel comfortable.
3. Allow for More Resident-Centred Care
Despite the amazing work carers do to ensure the health and wellbeing of residents, it’s impossible for them to be everywhere at once. Technology can help fill in those gaps and improve the quality of care they can provide to those who need it most.
With everything available at the touch of a button, tech solutions can help staff spend more time on the things that really matter - the residents.
As we said, digital care records can make information easier to access and quicker to share. It helps staff to make their processes more efficient, meaning their time isn’t taken up by long-winded administrative work.
Industry-leading tech on tablets or bedside can be tailored to an individual’s needs, preferences and activities. For example, they can be regularly updated with education, entertainment and requests that are important to the person using them.
As well as technology facilitating a better quality of life, it also can’t be understated how important mental stimulation is. Having technology provide something to focus on besides a daily routine is an essential deterrent to offset dementia and Alzheimer's. It’s by no means a cure, but research strongly suggests mental stimulation reduces the chances of these developing.
4. Prevents Isolation and Resident Loneliness
One worry many people may have for their relatives in care homes is they may become isolated from the wider world. If not particularly mobile, residents may be reliant on family visits for any contact with anyone beyond the four walls of the care home.
Introducing care homes to technology such as video calling on an accessible platform can help care home residents communicate on a more interactive level with friends and family.
This helps them maintain a sense of connection to their family and the wider world too. On a more basic level, introducing residents to email or social media can be another great way to help them remain engaged with life.
Providing access to the internet and educating residents on both how to browse the web and the internet’s possibilities is an excellent way to help enable the elderly to retain engagement with their hobbies. When we empower those in care, it makes for a more positive experience for everyone.
Residents’ safety, dignity and consent must be at the centre of decisions about their care. This applies to decisions about the use of new technology. You may not need some of this technology now, but it can be helpful to know what’s available and what may help in the future. Backed by an intelligent platform, you’re putting down a firm foundation for an Outstanding rating. But what solution can benefit you?
Find the Right Resident-Centred Care Solution for You
If you’re interested in finding out how patient entertainment systems have evolved and what modern platforms can do for care homes and your residents - then click to start our quiz below.
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