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The impact of Covid-19 on older people’s health, wellbeing and independence

The impact of Covid-19 on older people’s health, wellbeing and independence

By News

Extensive research has revealed the impact of the Covid-19 on older people’s physical and mental health.

Conducted by Age UK, the research highlights how the coronavirus has severely impacted the independence, confidence and overall wellbeing of older individuals, with calls for the government to provide the NHS and social care services further resources to boost recovery. 

The impact of Covid-19 on older people’s health, wellbeing and independence

Impact of Covid-19 restrictions on Older People

Independence at home and in the community 

A number of older adults have seen a decline in their overall independence as a result of the pandemic. With prolonged periods of isolation, increased anxiety and deteriorating health conditions all impacting the general health and wellbeing of millions of older people, the pandemic has had a negative effect on levels of independence.  

Around 12% of older people in the UK (approximately 1.9m people) felt they were less independent since the start of the pandemic. A further 54% of older people felt less confident attending a hospital appointment, and 18% of people felt less confident leaving the house by themselves. 43% of individuals also said they felt less motivated to do the things they enjoy since the start of the pandemic. 

The impact of Covid-19 on older people’s health, wellbeing and independenceCognitive decline and mental health

Lockdowns, shielding and general anxiety surrounding Covid-19 has caused older people to spend prolonged periods of time in isolation, with reduced social contact and limited mental stimulation. Research has found that this level of isolation has accelerated cognitive decline for older adults, with 22% (around 3.2m) older people now finding it harder to remember things since the start of the pandemic. 

This distress also exacerbated existing symptoms with older people with existing mental health conditions, with many over 65’s now experiencing increased levels of anxiety, low moods and depression. 

Research conducted by Alzheimer’s Society (2020) found that people living with dementia had exacerbated symptoms due to the pandemic.  Increased memory loss, difficulty concentrating, agitation, restlessness, stress and depression were the most common impacts to people living with dementia. 

The impact of Covid-19 on older people’s health, wellbeing and independenceImpact on physical health and wellbeing 

The Covid-19 pandemic has seen more older adults experience adverse effects to their physical health, with older people with pre-existing health and care needs and lower incomes hardest hit. 

45% of older people living with a long-term health condition were living with more physical pain since the start of the pandemic, whilst 29% of older people on lower incomes lived with more physical pain compared to 20% of older adults with higher incomes. 

10% of older people also reported difficulty walking up and down stairs compared to their previous physical abilities, and 9% of older people were finding it difficult to walk short distances. 

It is clear that the pandemic has had a lasting impact on the physical and mental wellbeing of older people in the UK. Not only has this created challenges with living independently, but also highlights the long battle many of our older population will experience to regain the levels of physicality and positive mental health they once had pre-pandemic.

To read more about the report by AgeUK, click here.

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

Carer uses Archangel to view citizen wellbeing and activity data

Archangel® care cloud approved in Scottish Digital Telecare Security Assessment

By News

After undergoing rigorous security assessments, the Archangel® care cloud has been approved and added to the Scottish Digital Telecare Security-Assessed Suppliers Scheme, marking an important step in Communicare247’s journey in supporting telecare service providers desire to achieve interoperability and their transition from analogue to digital.

Carer uses Archangel to view citizen wellbeing and activity dataAs an approved supplier, telecare service providers can be reassured and confident about the cybersecurity management processes and systems in place.  The Digital Telecare Security Assessment Scheme has been developed to support telecare service providers, including local authorities and housing associations, to evaluate cybersecurity risks of suppliers more effectively before integrating with new supplier digital solutions. This involves suppliers undergoing an assessment on its cybersecurity management processes and for a penetration test to be completed.

Andy Grayland, Chief Information Security Officer, Digital Office for Scottish Local Authorities said: 

“The Scottish digital telecare security-assessed suppliers scheme reviewed a submission from The Safe Shoes Group for their Archangel® system. The assessment panel was very impressed with pre-existing security culture and standards within Safe Shores. Both this assessment scheme, and Safe Shore’s positive response to it, will help ensure that vulnerable telecare users across Scotland are protected against the threat posed by cyber criminals when using these services.” 

Scott Gilmer, Technical Systems Manager at The Safe Shores Group said: 

“Communicare247® continually champions cybersecurity and data protection throughout its products and services, so we are delighted to have been the first platform gateway to receive such positive feedback from the Scottish Local Government Digital Office and their acceptance into their Digital Telecare Security-Assessed Suppliers Scheme. 

“With Archangel® included in the scheme, our customers and partners are assured of the cyber integrity within Archangel® and telecare service providers can be confident in the security and reliability of our system to support and protect individuals living independently at home. Furthermore, the Archangel® security and resilience can help to mitigate risk in adoption of new product choices, and offer time and effort saving, for both telecare service providers and suppliers.” 

About Archangel®

Archangel® is an independent, open, scalable, service delivery platform which is designed to seamlessly integrate a wide range of third party vendor home and mobile equipment, combine multiple data sources, and deliver proactive and reactive monitoring and reporting systems used to care for, and protect, individuals while living independently at home. 

Archangel® delivers flexible services, to mitigate the individual’s risk, and enables service providers to create personal and customised telecare services catering to the needs of an individual. 

The Archangel® monitoring system helps individuals to live independently in their own homes for longer, and a growing range of shared data insight portals will deliver proactive care management and response tools.

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

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Key takeaways from the new landmark Autism Strategy

By News

The UK government has launched a new multi-million pound autism strategy to speed up diagnosis and improve support and care for autistic people. 

Autism Strategy

In the UK, it is estimated that around 700,000 people have a diagnosis of autism. Many people experience delays and long waiting times for diagnosis, followed by inadequate or ineffective support which can be a significant barrier to a child or young person’s development. Through this new strategy, steps will be taken to improve diagnosis, which is crucial to help people get the support they need, and improve society’s understanding of autism.

The 5-year strategy was developed following engagement with autistic people, their family and carers. It will support autistic children and adults through better access to education, more help to get into work, preventing avoidable admissions to healthcare settings, and training for prison staff to better support prisoners with complex needs.

 

Key takeaways from the Autism Strategy

The new Autism Strategy was developed with the views and experiences of autistic people provided in response to the government’s call for evidence in 2019. Running until 2026, the new strategy aims to: 

Help improve understanding and acceptance of autism within society

Adults and children with autism are often perceived differently by others, as behavioural expectations differ with age. There is a lot of stigma surrounding people with autism, who often feel forced into hiding their true selves. 

As part of the new strategy, the government aims to improve understanding and acceptance of autism within society by developing and testing an initiative to improve public understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). This will be achieved by working with autistic people, their families and the voluntary sector to raise awareness of the strengths and positive traits of autism, including the challenges autistic people face in their daily lives. This new initiative aims to help people to recognise the diversity of the autistic community. 

Strengthen access to education and support for autistic people

In England, there are currently 646 state-funded or non-maintained schools approved to support ASD. As part of the new strategy, the government aims to improve testing by expanding a school-based identification programme based on a pilot in Bradford, which will expand from 10 schools to over 100 in the next three years.

By expanding this programme, more children will be diagnosed with autism earlier and will be able to access support sooner to support their development. 

Support for autistic people into employment 

Currently, 21.7% of adults with autism in the UK are in a form of paid employment. To help support more autistic people into employment, the Autism Strategy aims to improve the accessibility of job centres for autistic people to help them get the best help to find jobs or employment programmes. 

Tackle health and care inequalities  

Since 2018, there has been a nationwide rise in demand for autism assessments. In quarter two of 2020/2021, there were 9,868 referrals for suspected autism of which 15% had their first care contact within 13 weeks of referral. As part of the new Autism Strategy, £13 million of funding is to be used to reduce diagnosis waiting times and increase availability of post-diagnostic support for children and adults, addressing backlogs of people waiting made worse by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Building the right support in the community 

To help build the right support in the community and to support people in inpatient care, the Autism Strategy will provide £40m funding as part of the NHS Long Term Plan to improve community support and to help prevent avoidable admissions of autistic people and those with learning disability. £18.5m is also to be used to help prevent crises and improve the quality of inpatient mental health settings. 

Improve support within criminal and youth justice systems

Prison holds particular dangers for people with autism, who are prone to anxiety, inflexible thinking and sudden outbursts, traits likely to provoke others who don’t understand, including prison guards, criminal justice workers and other inmates. 

To help improve support for autistic people within criminal and youth justice systems, the Autism Strategy will seek to develop a toolkit to educate frontline staff about neurodiversity, as well as introduce further support that people may need. 

The new Autism Strategy has the potential to impact the lives of hundreds of thousand of autistic people and their families and for the first time, includes steps to support children and young people. We hope to see the strategy unfold positively over the next few years, with local councils and NHS bodies across England reviewing their local services to implement the new strategy. 

If you would like to find out more about the strategy, click here. 

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

Paul Nelson, Business Development Manager, Communicare247

Communicare247 appoints new Business Development Manager

By News

Communicare247 is delighted to welcome Paul Nelson in the role of Business Development Manager. 

Paul Nelson, Business Development Manager, Communicare247

Paul is a respected industry professional, having been engaged with the Telecare & Telehealth sector since 2013, and who has held senior positions with leading security, personal safety, and assistive technology organisations including Chubb and most recently, with Doro. He will be responsible for spearheading growth in the awareness and sales of our connected care cloud system, Archangel®, plus our advanced and integrated independent living solutions, and for building long-term, successful relationships and partnerships.

Paul said “I am delighted to be joining Communicare247 where we enable our customers to make proactive, informed decisions to predict the support needed for people to live independently in their own homes for longer.

“Our capacity to achieve this is via our cloud care system, Archangel® is second to none since Archangel® enables interoperability and advanced care service delivery. This means that Communicare247 really is delivering on the vision for future telecare services, and it is leading the industry transition from analogue to digital systems.” 

“I am so excited to join at this time, the opportunities to make a real difference to many people’s lives are truly exceptional!”

Speaking of the appointment, Communicare247 CEO Tom Morton said: 

“Paul’s appointment is a significant leap forward for Communicare247. The analogue to digital telecare challenge and a massive human resource pressure is currently impacting our health, social care, and housing sectors. So, it is extremely important for us to recruit quality people who understand these customer challenges, and will help us to communicate the significant value and benefits of Archangel®. Paul will demonstrate it’s shared cloud systems and data insights, showcase its resilient infrastructure, and work collaboratively with our healthcare, social care and housing customers to optimise their device and software investment decisions.” 

“Paul’s significant industry experience and insights in the telecare and telehealth sector provides him with a thorough understanding of the innovations and trends shaping the industry. He joins our growing team with in-depth knowledge that will help us to create sustainable growth for the future and to establish Communicare247 as the leader in cloud-based assistive technology solutions.” 

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

Older woman feeling lonely whilst starting out the window

What is loneliness and social isolation and how does it impact you?

By News

Experiencing loneliness and being socially isolated is a prevalent issue in our society, even before the coronavirus pandemic. Pre-pandemic, the number of over-50s experiencing loneliness was set to reach two million by 2025/6. Latest figures suggest that we have exceeded expected 2025 levels, with 7.2% of the adult population feeling lonely (3.7 million people) as a result of a range of factors relating to the pandemic. 

As a universal human experience, loneliness and social isolation is both complex and unique to everybody. With different factors leading to both experiences, the prevention and treatment of this state of mind and physical experience can vary dramatically. 

In this blog, we will look at what loneliness and social isolation is, what the main causes are and the effects each feeling has on your physical and mental health. 

Older woman feeling lonely whilst starting out the windowWhat is loneliness and social isolation?

Loneliness and social isolation are often used interchangeably to describe the feeling of being alone. Whilst the two terms are closely related and denote a degree of social disconnection, they do not necessarily mean the same thing. 

Social isolation can be defined as an objective state where an individual has few or infrequent social contacts or interactions. Being isolated can mean staying at home for long periods of time with no one to talk to, having no community involvement or no access to services, and having limited or no communication with family or friends. 

Loneliness is the subjective and distressing feeling that can be caused by instances of social isolation and is often defined by the discrepancy between actual and desired levels of social connection. However, it is possible to feel loneliness even when you aren’t alone. 

What are the main causes of loneliness & social isolation?

There are many causes of loneliness and social isolation that affect all people from different age groups, environments and backgrounds. Sometimes, we may not know why we feel lonely, and that’s okay. 

For some people, certain life events and experiences can cause them to feel lonely. This can include:

  • Experiencing loss or bereavement 
  • Experiencing a relationship break-up or losing a friend 
  • Moving away to a new place without family, friends or a local community network
  • Retiring or moving jobs, losing the social contact you had at work 

Other research suggests that people who live under certain conditions and circumstances are more vulnerable to loneliness, this includes people who: 

  • Have no friends, family or support network
  • Are a single parent or carer who may find it difficult to maintain a social life 
  • Are excluded from socialising due to mobility issues or shortage of money 
  • Belong to minority groups without a local network of support, including people who face discrimination due to disability, gender, race or sexual orientation

Impact of loneliness and social isolation on your health and wellbeing

Loneliness and social isolation has a wide range of negative effects on your physical and mental health. Recent studies have highlighted that experiencing loneliness has significant health risks and found that: 

Impact of loneliness and social isolation inforgraphic

  • Social isolation increases a person’s risk of premature death, a risk that rivals those of smoking, obesity and physical inactivity. 
  • Social isolation was associated with a 50% increase in risk of dementia and cognitive decline.
  • Poor social relationships (characterised by social isolation or loneliness) was associated with 29% increased risk of heart disease and 32% increased risk of having a stroke.
  • Loneliness was associated with higher rates of depression, anxiety and suicide. 

The same report also highlights that vulnerable adults from minority groups are at most risk of the negative impacts associated with loneliness and social isolation. This includes people who are immigrants, LGBT and victims of elder abuse. In the UK, loneliness has a large impact on the elderly community, with stats that show that well over half of those aged 85 and over and 35% of those aged 75 and 84 live alone. Half a million of older people have also reported going five or six days a week without seeing or speaking to anyone at all. 

Resources to support you

There are a variety of things you can do to help with your feelings of loneliness and social isolation. Remember, help is out there and support is available to help you feel better. 

Here are a range of resources you can use to combat loneliness and social isolation: 

NHS: Things you can try to help with loneliness 

NHS: Loneliness in older people 

Mind: Tips to manage loneliness

Leonard Cheshire: Guide to delivering an accessible activity for disabled people in your community 

National Autistic Society: Making friends – a guide for autistic adults 

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

TEC Trailblazer Programme

Communicare247 joins TEC Quality Trailblazer Supplier Programme

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Communicare247 (C247) is delighted to join TEC Quality’s Trailblazer Supplier Programme, a new program designed to support organisations currently completing the TSA’s Quality Standards Framework (QSF) to become an approved supplier of Technology Enabled Care (TEC).

TEC Trailblazer Programme

Going through this extensive audit process to achieve the QSF will see Communicare247 complete 10 core modules and 4 service delivery modules, showcasing evidence of how a range of standards are delivered within C247’s TEC service. This includes showcasing how C247 manages user and carer experience, service safety, information governance and business continuity, as well as service delivery covering TEC monitoring, telehealth monitoring and response services. 

Joining this new programme will allow C247 to expand its existing set of quality standards, which include ISO9001, ISO27001, BS5979, BS7858 and Cyber Essentials Plus to name a few. Built on collaboration, The Trailblazer Supplier Programme enables C247 to engage with other partners in the industry to learn, share lessons, collaborate and strive for shared excellence in the sector to deliver quality products and services for 1.5 million telecare users in the UK. 

Speaking of joining the programme, Communicare247 CEO Tom Morton said: 

“At Communicare247, we continually invest in the quality of our people, systems and processes and comply with the latest industry standards to ensure our customers have complete confidence in the quality of our service. We pride ourselves on our ability to deliver continuous improvement and collaboration, something the Trailblazer Programme helps to facilitate.” 

Helen Rudkin, Quality Manager at TEC Quality said: 

“TEC Quality’s Trailblazer Programme represents an evolution in the progression of the TEC sector, and I am delighted to have on board some of the industry’s most progressive supplier organisations to help drive innovation and standards based on the principles of quality, safety and continuous improvement to better the lives of people within their communities.”

To find out more about the TEC Quality Trailblazer Supplier Programme, click here. 

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

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How assistive technology can help to improve dementia care

By News

Retired couple looking at each otherDementia poses one of the biggest challenges we face as a society. Worldwide, around 50 million people have dementia and in the UK, More than 920,000 are living with dementia, a number expected to rise to over one million by 2024 (Alzheimer’s Society, 2019). 

With an ageing population, people are more likely to be affected by dementia. Currently, 1 in 14 people over the age of 65 live with dementia, narrowing to 1 in 6 people over the age of 80. As the number of people living with dementia rises, the amount of support and care also increases, creating challenges for health and social care providers, families and unpaid carers. 

To alleviate some challenges associated with dementia care, and to provide more support to individuals caring for others with dementia, assistive technologies can be introduced. Through this introduction, people with dementia can also benefit with an avenue to live more independently and safely for longer in their own homes and communities. 

What is assistive technology?

Assistive technology refers to different types of devices, systems or applications that help to maintain or improve a person’s ability to do things in their daily lives. 

Assistive technology could include:

  • Smartphone or tablet applications
  • Portable GPS enabled devices
  • Wearable technology such as a watch or wristband 
  • Environment and activity monitoring sensors
  • Voice assistant technology 
  • Automated devices, such as ovens, showers, and window controls

Assistive technology can help with things such as: 

  • Memory problems
  • Problems with carrying out tasks 
  • Communication, including speech and hearing
  • Mobility
  • Keeping safe inside and outside of the home
  • Maintaining independence and self confidence
  • Socialising and doing things you enjoy 
Senior lady wearing assistive technology wristband

How can assistive technology help people with dementia?

Assistive technologies come in all shapes and sizes, from stand alone mobile devices to fully integrated care systems built into the home. Depending on the technology you introduce, people with dementia can take the steps towards maintaining their independence, keeping safe and staying active in their own homes and communities.

older lady using a kettle

Everyday Living

Assistive technology enables people with dementia to live more independently with different technologies available to assist with their daily needs. This can include environmental tools such as climate control, temperature sensors, humidity monitoring, light activation and curtain and window controls. Assistive technologies can also include automated ovens, dishwashers, washing machines, electric showers, automated taps and toilets, making life more accessible and comfortable for people with dementia. 

Assistive technology can also be introduced to help people with dementia to manage and monitor their own health and wellbeing on a daily basis. Smart watches, wristbands and other tools can monitor vital signs such as blood pressure, heart rate and general activity levels, raising alerts when daily health levels dip. These devices can also be fitted with fall detectors and voice prompts and reminders, improving a person’s daily safety and medication management. 

 

Personal Safety

Woman holding the Freedom DeviceAssistive technology can support people with dementia to live with more safety and security, whether they live at home, in supported accommodation or in a care home setting. By introducing a personal safety device fitted with an SOS button and fall detection, people with dementia and their care circle can feel reassured of their safety whilst they are at home or in their community, with automatic alerts when an SOS is raised. 

Assistive technology such as ambient activity sensors placed in living spaces such as bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchens can also alert carers and family when a loved one with dementia is active in their home. These sensors placed around the home can also report on inactivity, raising a rule based alert when no activity is registered after a certain period of time. 

In a person’s home, safeguarding technology such as flood, smoke, fire and carbon monoxide sensors can also be introduced to help improve personal safety by automatically summoning help in an emergency situation.

 

Older woman walking alone in remote areaMonitoring

By introducing assistive technology, family members and carers can better monitor their loved ones with dementia who may be out walking and active in their community. Providing a loved one with a GPS enabled device or app with automatic fall detection and an SOS button enables people to go walks safely, whilst their location can be monitored in the event of an emergency. 

For people with dementia who are prone to wandering and disorientation, this same GPS device can be used to trigger an alert when a geofence is breached or entered. A geofence is a predetermined area that is outlined by a family member or carer that may be of danger if a loved one enters or exits this area. Geofences are commonly placed around areas of water or dangerous roads, or can be placed around a person’s home, community or care home. 

To help people who commonly wander and have disorientation, door contact sensors can also be fitted to alert family members and carers when a loved one has left their home at a specific time, such as during the night. These same sensors can detect when doors have been left open, raising relevant alerts to assure loved ones are safe. 

 

Older woman using assistive technologyCommunication

Assistive technology can help people with dementia to communicate more effectively with loved ones, their carers and other health professionals. With the use of different video conferencing technologies, people with dementia can talk to loved ones, contact their carer for extra support and have video consultations with relevant health professionals. Similarly, mobile apps with built-in support functions can help people with dementia to contact friends and support to request for assistance, request emergency help or to generally chat. 

By introducing assistive technology such as an Amazon Echo Show, people with dementia can stay entertained at home whilst staying connected to friends and family, reducing social isolation, a prevalent issue for people living with dementia. Devices like the Echo Show can also help people to receive prompts, food and medication reminders and comfort messages throughout the day, enabling people to stay independent and on top of their own daily routines. 

How to obtain assistive technology

If you are living with dementia or supporting someone with the condition, you can obtain assistive technology to help support care and everyday living. There are a number of ways that you can obtain assistive technology, this can include: 

  • Contacting your local authority for a needs based assessment
  • Contacting your housing provider who may supply technology in supported, sheltered or extra care housing 
  • Buying it yourself 

At Communicare247, we offer a range of assistive technologies to support people living with dementia. Our range of connected devices are designed to support people to live safer, independent lives at home and in their communities and consist of a variety of mobile devices and at home sensor technologies. 

To find out more about how Communicare247 can help you get started with assistive technology, click the links below to explore our range of products and services.

The Freedom Range

The Freedom Range provides mobile devices and apps to use at home and in your community. Featuring an SOS button, fall detection, GPS monitoring and mood indicators, the Freedom Range helps you live independently and safely, reducing social isolation.

See More

The Liberty Range

The Liberty Range features a range of sensors located around the home, including room activity monitors, smoke and CO detectors, door monitors and voice assistant technology such as Alexa to help care circles stay informed of their family members health and to help spot signs of deteriorating health early.

See More

The Live Well Range

The Live Well Range features tele-health monitoring devices to monitor vital signs such as blood pressure and heart rate to better manage health at home. This technology helps care circles to stay informed and helps to spot signs of changing health conditions.

See More

You can find out more about how Communicare247 can help to manage health, wellbeing and safety by visiting our How We Help page. Professionals can also visit our dedicated For Professionals page. 

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

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Communicare247 shortlisted for Health & Care Industry Collaboration Award

By News

Communicare247 is delighted to announce that we have been shortlisted for the Industry Collaboration Award at this year’s Holyrood Connect’s Digital Health and Care Awards 2021.

The awards ceremony will bring together health and care organisations, collaborators andstakeholders, to celebrate success and highlight the best examples of digital innovation within Scotland’s health and social care sector. 

Communicare247 has been shortlisted for the Industry Collaboration Award, which highlights the innovative partnerships between the public and private sector and celebrates successful digital transformation projects which work to deliver positive outcomes for citizens. 

With ongoing collaboration with Glasgow Health and Social Care Partnership as part of the Can Do Project, where Communicare247 won funding of over £130k, and other partners across health and social care, Communicare247 has been recognised for our work for developing Project Liberty. 

Project Liberty is a pioneering assisted living telecare system that incorporates consumer devices such as voice activated speakers, smart phones and other smart wearables, sensors and location technologies within a digital monitoring and response platform. Project Liberty has been developed as an ideal solution to allow some of the most vulnerable people across the UK to live independently at home, whilst providing a robust, cost-effective and insightful telecare solution for care providers that can help assess and predict the care needs of citizens. 

Speaking of the announcement, Chief Executive Tom Morton, said: 

“I am absolutely delighted that Communicare247 is being recognised for its ongoing collaboration with service end-users and key partners across the industry.

“Project Liberty has made it clear that partnerships and ongoing collaboration with stakeholders is vital to achieve industry growth, for wider scale transformation, and to encourage innovation in health and social care services, especially in a time where connected systems, remote monitoring, and access to data is more important than ever.”

This year’s Digital Health and Care Awards will take place virtually on February 26th and will celebrate achievements over six award categories. Full details of the awards can be found here. 

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

Communicare247’s pioneering digital telecare project wins funding for next phase

By News

Assistive care technology specialist Communicare247 is on track to deliver a first-of-its-kind digital home care system in Glasgow. 

Communicare247 has won funding worth over £130,000 to support the next phase of development of Project Liberty, a new system which will enable the UK’s most vulnerable people to live independently in their own homes and communities for longer.

The pioneering digital telecare system incorporates consumer devices such as voice-activated speakers, smart phones and other smart wearables, sensors and location technologies through a novel monitoring system that can integrate with existing telecare home care alarms. 

The project will connect with Scotland’s world-leading long range wide area network (LoRaWAN), which enables devices to collect and send data without the need for 3G, 4G or Wi-Fi. The IoT Scotland wireless sensor network is designed to support full use of internet of things (IoT) devices, including sensor applications deployed in Communicare247’s Liberty home care system.

The Liberty project is expected to be complete in the third quarter of 2021 and will provide a scalable digital telecare system that could be deployed by local authorities, housing associations and care providers across the UK.

The support for Project Liberty comes via the £9.2million Can Do Innovation Challenge Fund which announced funding for a number of public sector-led innovation schemes in Scotland. Project Liberty is part of Glasgow City Council’s “Technology enabled Glasgow” challenge, uniting project leader Communicare247 with partners and stakeholders including the Glasgow Health and Social Care Partnership and the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland (the Alliance).

The funding will be used to support the second phase of development which will deploy and test the system with citizens living independently with a variety of complex care needs, including Alzheimer’s disease. The first phase commenced in January 2019.

Tom Morton, Chief Executive of Communicare247, said: “Project Liberty will design and deliver the ideal solution to allow some of the most vulnerable people in Scotland to live independently within their own home with reduced reliance on publicly-funded care interventions. 

“A telecare system that uses Alexa and smart watches is a game changer. We are integrating common and easy to use consumer products along with IoT sensors and innovative telehealth monitoring in an existing data-led system that reports to carers, family members and emergency services as required.

“Currently, across the UK, there is an estimated 4milllion elderly and shielding people who rely on analogue telecare systems to help keep them safe. Most of these systems are at risk of becoming obsolete due to the telephone network switch from analogue to digital. This gives the UK an unprecedented opportunity to adopt a leading digital-enabled assisted living care which will be delivered through Project Liberty.

“Together the partners behind Project Liberty are leading the way in developing integrated solutions to worldwide challenges in ageing populations and I’d like to thank them for their support and vision.”

Michael Gillespie, Principal Officer, Glasgow HSCP said: “Communicare247 were selected by Glasgow HSCP/ City Council from a competitive field of over 40 SMEs in Phase 1 of the Scottish Enterprise-sponsored Can Do challenge. Their proposed integrated digital solutions will help us meet the challenge of transitioning telecare services from analogue to digital. This carries the potential to empower users to self-manage and maintain independence at home using familiar technologies.

“To date our private/public sector partnership work with them has been productive. Subsequently we have selected Communicare247 to develop further their product in Phase 2 of the Challenge as their innovative solution is highly valued. 

“The supply of telecare is a relatively narrow marketplace characterised by relatively one-dimensional options. Communicare247’s forward thinking approach provides the potential for using a wider range of peripherals within a stable and effective platform which we hope will facilitate delivery of more user-friendly technology-enabled care services.”

Click here to find out more about Project Liberty. 

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

Communicare247 hails “gamechanger” report on the future of social care in Scotland

By News
Tom Morton, Chief Executive of assisted living technology specialist Communicare247, welcomed the publication of the National Briefing Document by Digital Telecare for Scottish Local Government highlighting the urgent need to upgrade telecare systems supporting over 180,000 elderly and vulnerable citizens in Scotland.

He said: “This report is a game changer. It nails on the head the issues facing telecare providers such as local authorities and housing associations and their vulnerable clients.

“We became aware that the telecare systems used across Scotland risked becoming obsolete as soon as the decision was taken to switch the national telephony network from analogue to digital in 2016. This process has now been speeded up and will be complete by 2023. The warning is stark that without intervention, call failures will continue to rise because analogue equipment can’t operate safely or reliably over digital telephone lines.

“Now is certainly the time for the publication of this document, which provides an essential routemap towards ensuring telecare is both safe and robust for the increasing number of people who rely on it.

“The report highlights that there will be a need for investment, but it also confirms that care providers now have an unprecedented opportunity to deploy a transformational transition to digitally-enabled assisted living. This includes a range of voice and sensor-enabled devices that could never be used in analogue systems. Other benefits include quality and reliability, more choices and improved experience for citizens with services tailored to their needs, the power of data-driven services and overall resilience for both the user, care providers and alarm receiving centres (ARCs). 

“Scotland is a leader in developing integrated solutions to worldwide challenges in ageing populations. The future of social care is reliant on telecare systems that offer both reduced costs but also improved outcomes and applications that mean people can live independently for longer in their own homes.

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About Communicare247

Communicare247 is a health and social care service provider which delivers connected care solutions. Using secure digital technology and monitoring services, we enable citizens to remain safe and independent in their own homes for longer. Cloud services and effective technology provide valuable reassurance for individuals receiving care and permits sharing of information with families and care providers. The service helps to support service commissioners in balancing their duty of care with practical efficiencies capable of meeting modern day audit and resource challenges.

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