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Embracing Change: The Transformative Power of Technology in Care Home Management


Illustration depicting the benefits of integrating technology in care home management for its residents and carers alike.
Embracing Change: The Transformative Power of Technology in Care Home Management

Confronting the intricacies of care home management is undeniably complex, and scepticism can often accompany the idea of integrating technology into established practices. However, let's look at what the data says and see how technology can be a powerful ally, helping Care Home Managers enhance operations and deliver even better care to residents.

 

Operational Efficiency and Time Savings

 Concerns about technology complicating operations are common, yet evidence suggests otherwise. Care homes that have adopted technology-driven solutions report a substantial reduction in administrative burdens. From resource scheduling to care plan documentation, some Care Home have reported time efficiency savings of up to 66% (1). The cumulative time efficiencies gained translates directly to more focused attention on resident care.

 

Improved Resident Outcomes and Satisfaction

 Technology's impact on care planning extends beyond mere efficiency gains. NHS England advocates for personalised care plans (2), emphasizing the importance of involving individuals in its development. Digital apps are facilitating involvement of people in their personalised care plans (3), which in turn brings enhanced resident satisfaction in their overall care.

 

Reduction in Human Errors

Humans can make mistakes. Fortunately, technology can help.

Well-designed digital care systems, ensure that the documentation and access of important information is accurate, readily accessible, and delivered at the right time. Through nudges, alerts, and reminders, care givers are prompted to take the appropriate actions or notes, so nothing gets missed. Clear handover notes ensure there is always a single source of truth and accountability. Given the above, it’s no surprise that some Care Homes that have implemented Digital Care Planning systems have seen a reduction in human errors as high as 50% (4).

 

Cost-Efficient Healthcare Management

For most care homes, their biggest expenditure is their staff. Care Homes that have deployed digital care systems report a significant reduction in time saved doing assessments, care plans, and administrative tasks which leads directly to significant cost savings. And it doesn’t end there, other costs such as printing, storage, stationary, record disposals are cost savings that are also realised.

 

Data-Driven Decision-Making

If you were dropped in the middle of the country and asked to find your way home, this might be quite a challenge. Maybe if you were an experienced hiker, you could use your instinct and landmarks you know to get you home. However, if you had a map, a compass, a mobile phone with GPS, then your odds of getting home just shot up.

This is exactly what digital systems do – they leverage data to draw out insights that enable care givers to make better care decisions. A recent case study by Durham County Council and the NHS Foundation Trust highlighted the benefits of rolling out digital systems in a care environment. Benefits included (5):

 

  • Improved care for the resident

  • Establishing a baseline of what is normal for the resident

  • Easier for care providers to make quality referrals

  • Identifying early signs of deterioration

  • Reduction in unnecessary admission to hospital – pre-COVID hospital admission was 19 per care home per month, post digital system rollout hospital admission reduced to 2 per care home per month

 

Regulatory Compliance Made Simple

Meeting regulatory standards is non-negotiable for care homes. CQC,The Department of Health and Social Care, and NHS England are strong advocates for digital record systems and its benefits. Some benefits are:

 

·      Capture information more easily at the point of care

·      Support staff to respond more quickly to people’s needs

·      Share important information quickly, safely and securely between care settings

·      Minimise risks to people’s safety

 

Care Home Managers find that technology not only meets but often exceeds regulatory requirements, providing a robust foundation for quality care.

 

In conclusion, the data overwhelmingly supports the notion that technology is not a disruption but a catalyst for positive change in care home management. By embracing innovative solutions, managers can elevate their care homes to new heights of operational efficiency, resident satisfaction, and overall excellence.

 

 

Sources:

(4) Care Champion's own research

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