The UK has a growing population of those needing care and with more elderly people moving into care homes there is continually growing pressure to deliver efficient and quality care being placed on the care sector.
The industry has been affected by rising costs and reductions in the care budget, which is nowhere near enough to fund the needs of our elderly population. The burden of paper-based admin can be a nightmare for care providers. Carers do spend as much time as they can delivering the attention that clients need, but all too often they are tied up doing onerous amounts of paperwork making it difficult to offer a high standard of quality care. (see our KLOEs blog for more on this.)
This is where technology and free care management software can help. Care apps like ours have helped pave the way for improvements in the service that frontline staff and management offer. By streamlining the administrative side of the system, carers have more time freed up to deliver quality care. This means that service-users and carers have a much better all-round experience. It's a win-win for everyone!
So What Are Care Apps?
For most people apps are central to everyday life and most people are familiar with them, regularly use their smartphones or tablets to access apps such as Facebook. Care apps use the same type of technology to help modernise and streamline the coordination and recording of care for care providers. They are used by frontline carers, support workers and care managers to help their service-users receive a better standard of care.
And What Do They Do?
Care apps streamline the administration process and reduce unnecessary tasks that can waste hours each week, allowing carers to spend more time with clients. Care apps can also track data which makes it easy to see where improvements to care delivery can be made.
Increasingly, people remain in their homes and opt for home care to help with personal tasks such as washing, bathing and getting dressed. People want to remain independent in their homes for as long as possible, but when this no longer works, the next step is to move into a care home. This comes with the expectation that they will receive a higher standard of continuous care.
This doesn't always happen, carers can be rushed off their feet and the burden of administration is causing care to become disjointed. A carer may not have enough time to spend with a resident due to being tied up with paperwork, or they may have been told last minute about a shift change and need to cover someone who can't come in. These sorts of disruptions make it harder for people in the care profession to deliver the expected standard of care.
Using care home management software like ours can make life so much easier for Care Managers to better coordinate care delivery. A Care Manager can record everything that needs to be done for individual residents as well as knowing everything that's happening in the home. When a frontline carer checks their app, they can see a list of tasks to complete or check their shifts well in advance.
How can Carers Use Them?
Our care app can be downloaded for free to a smartphone or tablet allowing it to be used seamlessly for recording and organising carers' daily tasks (which we call To-do's). Information about residents is available at a swipe. Care plans are stored in the cloud and To-Do lists are populated in real time. Instead of juggling between different folders for each resident's vital paperwork, care admin can be completed simply on one device. Ultimately this saves a lot of time, which allows carers to spend more of it with clients.
What are the Benefits?
There are lots of benefits to using care apps for those in the social care industry. The time that is saved can be used more effectively, so staff don't have to rush and can spend more quality time with clients. Time can be used to take care of personal tasks, attend to anything logged on a task list, or simply to have a chat. This is so important to improving the quality of care.
In the long run, local authorities will be more inclined to form real working partnerships with care providers that embrace tech embrace technology. Their levels and quality of care will be far easier to monitor and they can work together to contribute to improved delivery. Overall this means that care apps are here to stay, which is a good thing for everyone, not least the clients.
How can you start using Care Apps in your service?
The easiest thing you can do to get started using care apps in your care service is to head on over to our Get-Started page and set up your free account. In no time at all, you'll be up and running and be able to ditch your paper care recording.