Digital care plans: don’t get left behind
As a care home owner, you may not deal with the immediate repercussions of the everyday annoyances that come with ‘pen and paper’ based care, such as incomplete notes, illegible writing and lost records. However, going digital not only helps ease the pressures of today but gets your business ready for tomorrow too.
It’s likely your care home managers are already looking at digital solutions to make their service run more efficiently, so chat to them about what their objectives and expectations are. Look for platforms that offer trials and training, or a streamlined selection of features that allow your team to try as part of their everyday routine. We’re the only digital care management platform that offers a free plan. We're on a mission to make person-centred technology accessible to everybody in social care. That's why our starter plan is 100% free and always will be – no catch, no time limits or usage restraints. It includes everything you need to get your electronic care planning system up and running.
With a digital approach to care, you place your patients and service users at the heart of your planning, management and review. Digitisation gives your managers and their team new levels of authority and autonomy, with increased visibility and accountability. Having all the notes, logs and to-do lists in the palm of a carer’s hand – but also on cloud storage – joins your team together across shifts and places of work for a more holistic approach.
What’s more, the time and cost savings made by ditching paperwork, printing costs, paper consumption and storage are significant.
Going digital also offers long-term strategy opportunities by offering a broader overview of your organisation’s performance. Digital care makes it easier to pinpoint areas for improvement and – ultimately – increased profitability.
If none of these are reason enough to take the step into digital, remember the government is aiming for 80% of CQC-registered care providers to have digital social care records by March 2024. This is used as a milestone towards the ultimate goal of a full transition to digital, meaning it’s not a case of if, but when.
No service provider too big or too small
For larger organisations and service providers with multiple sites, having digital care plans, logs and to-do lists all in a hand-held device means that carers can work fully-remote or from the central office, without having to return to pick up and drop off files. For ad-hoc and agency staff, they pick up instantly from another team member’s handover. And, in the case of absences and emergencies, another carer or member of staff is able to fill in confidently, without a physical handover.
And for smaller, independent care homes, the fees are affordable, especially compared to printing costs that can run into thousands of pieces of paper every week. Choose a platform that allows you to choose and pay for only the features you need and use.
In all cases, going digital directly improves your CQC rating too, as this case study from Care Taylor Made Ltd shows. The service for adults with complex needs improved from ‘good’ to ‘outstanding’ when Jennifer Bridgen, registered manager and her team started using Log my Care.
All in the digital detail
As one manager and Log my Care user pointed out: “if it isn’t documented, it didn’t happen.”
By replacing paperwork with digital care plans, care workers spend more time engaged with the people they care for. Digital care plans also allow for better quality checks and audits. Firstly, it allows for a complete, accurate and up to date record of a person’s needs. From their daily routine to their family arrangements to consent to risks with mobility. There’s that word again: quality.
For a sector that is in the midst of a staffing crisis, the recruitment pool is not large enough to relieve pressure on individual organisations, and care providers need to be open-minded in the way they retain and recruit staff; at all levels. In fact, the state of the adult social care sector and workforce 2022, conducted and published by Skills for Care, has estimated that the care sector may need 480,000 more workers by 2035.
To help make the switch to digital, you may be able to access funding through your local Integrated Care System (ICS) to help upgrade your current systems, connectivity and devices.
Find out more about Log my Care and its features, including the option of a free starter plan.