Integrated care

On the 14th July David Behan, the chair of the Care Quality Commission, wrote in the Guardian:

Everybody in this country deserves good care, no matter who they are, where they are treated or how complex their case. And as our older population increases, so too will the demand for services and consequently we will have more people with more complex needs in an environment that itself faces increasing pressures.So it’s never been a better time to talk about integrated care. How do we stop people with complex needs falling between the gaps in services?”

Paul Barry, Chief Executive of everyLIFE Technologies, responded:

David Behan is absolutely right to say that everybody in the country deserves good care no matter who they are. The need for a conversation collectively led by both health and social care has never been so great. 

We know that technology can unite this fragmented system and improve care for people, whether at home, in residential care, or hospital, which is why everyLIFE is spearheading a new movement, The Fourth Age of Care. The Fourth Age of Care is a new movement by a collective of organisations including the Local Government Alliance, New NHS Alliance and everyLIFE Technologies. Their recent white paper, produced from a roundtable attended by a number of stakeholders including NHS England, LGA, Age UK and New NHS Alliance, describes what the future could look like if the care industry grasps the opportunities that digital technology can offer. It’s a way of thinking about a world where the person cared for in their own home or a residential or nursing home is connected to the network of people who support them. That includes their families, the carers who meet their day-to-day needs and health and social care professionals.

We understand from first-hand experience how frustrating it is to have disjointed care. If you don’t have one care plan accessible to multiple providers, health professionals will not receive reliable information, which ultimately puts the person being cared for at risk. That is precisely why everyLIFE developed the PASSsystem, a CQC recognised care management platform that puts the person receiving care at the centre. There’s no need for people to explain the details of their case over and over again. All those involved in a person’s care including GPs, community nurses, care workers and family members can view their care record remotely in real time through openPASS.

The Fourth Age of Care forum is delivering the collective conversation that is so urgently required and has identified five action points to further this important agenda:

  1. Join the debate. That means everyone together, open and pragmatic discussions – public sector, private sector and the voluntary sector

  2. Provide impartial, high quality, individualised information about services to consumers of care. You can’t choose well when you don’t know what is on offer and all the information to make an educated decision

  3. Move to digital platforms for care planning and delivery. Connected care is shared, integrated care – and shared, integrated care requires shared data supported by cross sector digital technology

  4. Develop a common lexicon. Connected care requires all those involved in health and social care to speak the same language – one that puts the person in the centre

  5. Define a common dataset. What information is it that supports care planning and delivery that must be shared across a connected network?”

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