Tom Morton, CEO of Communicare247, has welcomed extra funding for care services in England and Wales announced in the Budget worth £695million in 2019/20.
However, these funds which will be allocated to local authorities should be focused on delivering a digital transition which will make the UK’s growing care budgets more sustainable in the future.
Mr Morton said investment in digital telecare and applications of services and delivered by “internet of things” (IoT) must be deployed to solve the funding crisis facing local authorities and vulnerable people needing care in their homes across the UK.
With the added pressure of the current changes to the telecommunications network, effectively rendering existing analogue telecare alarm systems obsolete, councils must also ensure money is found to make transformational changes.
Mr Morton said: “The need for a vision and funding plan for adult social care has never been so urgent. We urge local authorities to spend the Chancellor’s boost wisely on the digital infrastructure that will ensure care is affordable and effective for all.
“Digital telecare platforms such as Archangel by Communicare247canenable care for all in the near future. IoT connected sensors will alert family and professional care staff to changes in the vital statistics of a frail or disabled person, while ‘smart’ pill packs will remind the user or their carers when medicines need to be administered and when prescriptions need refilling. Telehealth applications will also deliver care management systems accessible by both family and care providers as well as the users themselves.
“While some of these technologies exist they currently operate as isolated services and generate independent silos of data. Therefore these complex systems require integration within a single platform such as Archangel. Only by merging these data silos can we unlock the necessary efficiencies and the inherent knowledge within. It will require that local health and social care providers change the way their systems operate to ensure that elderly care remains affordable now and in the future.