MiTAC & Invatech Health: Providing the complete solution for Somerset Care Homes
Somerset Care is an award-winning, not-for-profit provider of residential and nursing care for over 1000 residents in 29 care homes in Somerset and the Isle of Wight. With over 25 years’ heritage, its philosophy is to provide a ‘home’ within a home, enabling residents to live as independently as possible in a comfortable and safe environment.
Invatech are continually growing from strength to strength; working together with MiTAC, they have transformed care homes across the country. Somerset Care recently accompanied Invatech Health at the Health Services Journal 2016 Awards where Invatech Health won the “Improving care with Technology” category, for transforming medicines management in care homes.
Maintaining a compliant and high level of service in 29 care homes is a challenge. Errors can be made by the individual carers and nurses who oversee medication orders, the administering of medication, and the provision of correct care and treatment. This is because they have traditionally used paper systems. Paper systems have no backup, records can be easily damaged and they are prone to mistakes such as inaccurate recordings, signature failings and mistakes in time keeping. Added to this, the paper-based medicines management process is simple but time consuming, with staff spending at least four hours a day on medicines related activities. Somerset Care trialled several electronic medicines management systems to reduce errors and improve compliance. Early trials involved a system on a laptop with a connected barcode scanner, which proved to be sub-optimal. Nurses had to position the laptop and scanner on top of a medication trolley, making it difficult to administer medicines to residents. The scanning device was also challenging to use - it was time consuming and clunky to scan the medication and staff struggled to manoeuvre the heavy laptop which was secured to a trolley. Laptops were also not waterproof and had to be charged after each round. A second trial on a consumer tablet was carried out over six months. The significant obstacle with this trial was that all staff had the same log in details. From a governance point of view, Somerset Care were unable to identify staff accountability and in addition, the device did not have a built-in scanner meaning staff members had to type in all barcodes which was time consuming. The device was also not fit for the care home environment - it could be easily damaged by being dropped or through water contact.
Somerset Care trialled the second-generation Pro-active Care System (PCS) provided by Invatech on a MioCARE™ A235 tablet. The trial, in three care homes over a three-month period, impressed not only because of the support provided by Invatech, but also because the MioCARE™ A235 was well suited to the care home environment – it has integrated barcode scanning, is waterproof, portable, anti-microbial, drop proof, and is easy to use with its Android OS and a 5.7” screen to view the PCS system. Due to the success of the trial, the PCS software on the MioCARE™ A235 was rolled out to all 29 care homes.
There are now 60 tablets across 29 homes, delivering significant benefits for Somerset Care. In terms of corporate governance, the data generated on medicines management for each care home can be collected and presented on a secure website called Invalife. This allows care home managers to have greater visibility on medicines management of each resident, as well as staff performance in relation to medicines related activities. At group level, medicine data can be categorised and measured, enabling each care home to have a score on medicines management. This score is known as the “Beacon Score” which allows clinical directors and medicines leads at a group level visibility on individual care home performance in relation to medicines management. At any one time, they are three clicks away from seeing underperformance, number of errors and individual responsibility.
I love technology and we were looking for something that we could use in all our care homes without any problems. We worked closely with Invatech which took on board our feedback and what we were really looking for.
After rolling out the tablets to all our homes with appropriate training, we immediately saw an improvement in scanning percentage and reduction in error. In Calway House, we have five units and five docking stations and the nurses’ feedback has been positive. They can carry the tablet around and clean them easily. This is very important within the care home environment.
On a personal note, the devices give me the data to be able to order medication independently and accurately, where necessary. I am also able to check whether nurses have followed correct procedure. This way, we can keep in line with the Care Quality Commission Regulatory advice and make sure activity is compliant. In the last three months Calway House has only made one error – a remarkable achievement considering the size of the home.
Alan Roca, Clinical Manager, Calway House, Somerset Care
The PCS system and the MioCARE™ tablets are excellent. Part of my role is overseeing 29 care homes, ensuring all our staff are administering medication correctly. Implementation of this technology has been a big step for us; our time and medication management has improved hugely. Because of the tablet, time taken to administer medicine has reduced by several hours a day, allowing staff to spend more time caring for residents, as well as improving stock control.
Amy Yapp, Project Manager, Somerset Care
- Dual-band WiFi for reliable connectivity
- GPS enabled
- Bluetooth® 4.0 EDR
- IP54 water- and dustproof casing
- 1m resistant to drops following MIL-STD-810G
- Antimicrobial housing
- Uses Android™ 5.1
- CTS Certified
- Easily integrate existing applications through Android™ SDK
- Built-in NFC RFID technology for two-factor authentication
- Optional 1D/2D barcode imager
- Front and rear cameras
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