By Debbie le Quesne

Posts Tagged ‘care in the community. community care

Apps help to co-ordinate caring – simply a great concept

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I don’t belong to the generation fascinated by the latest tablet or mobile phone. Phones are a vast improvement on pigeon post and for my use are primarily for calls, texting and taking snaps.

Computers, of one kind or another appear to be surgically attached to me as work is just a keyboard away.

Technology is central to our lives and in the care sector is getting a broader platform daily. Everything from the latest Facebook app to recipe ideas can be found on someone’s tablet or phone.

So I was not in the least surprised to read that Carers UK has made a pioneering move into the app market with the launch of Jointly – a tool to help families manage care for loved ones alongside increasingly complex lives.

It gives patient profile details, messaging, medication regime and much more. It’s been created by carers for carers.

You can visit www.jointlyapp.com or download the app for free and access a user guide and a list of questions and answers.

You can purchase a Jointly circle with a one-off payment of £2.99 either through the Apple or Google Play stores or at www.jointlyapp.com. This allows for care group networking.

The technology baffles me, but as a working tool I’m already on the hook. Jointly offers an easy information stream among an invited circle of helpers and carers and helps co-ordinate tasks.

Across the UK there are 6.5 million carers – half juggling care with work and a third caring for older relatives alongside raising children.

We live with geographical and time availability issues and it’s no different for those trying to organise care between family, friends and professionals. It’s called distant caring or sandwich caring and I can see a huge benefit in embracing this technology so that everyone, at all times, is kept in the loop with a shared calendar of duties.

Technology will never replace hands-on care, but I’ll help promote support all I can – goodness knows, it’s needed more than ever.

CQC to target dementia care providers

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A ‘themed inspection’ of some 150 care homes and hospitals is to be carried out by the Care Quality Commission to see how people with dementia are cared for in England.

The idea is to find out what works well and what needs to improve on a national level.

The announcement came last week when Mr Cameron hosted a G8 summit in London on developing coordinated global action to prevent, delay and effectively treat the condition.

A staggering 670,000 people in England are estimated to have dementia and the number is expected to double over the next three decades.

David Behan, Chief Executive of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) said: “There is a real need to explore why people with dementia may not be receiving high quality care, as well as how the different services work together.

“This is the first time that CQC has undertaken a review, which specifically looks at the care service that people with dementia use and rely on.

“It will address the key issues that these people face, such as why admissions to hospital from care homes are higher for people who have dementia compared to those who do not have the condition.

“Our findings will draw conclusions on a national scale about what works well and where improvements are required.”

All of these inspections will be unannounced.

For every service inspected, CQC will publish a report detailing its judgments and any required improvements.

What I fond particularly encouraging about this initiative is they way CQC wants to hear from people with dementia, or the relatives and friends of those with the memory-loss condition. The access point can be found on CQC’s website or through Age UK, Dementia Action Alliance, Regional Voices, Dementia Advocacy Network and the Race Equality Foundation.

No doubt the bar will be set high and some of the finding damning. I can only hope that this inspection programme will be an added lever to get some proper government funding in place for both research and those who deliver the care at the sharp end.