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MyHomeReach helps clients stay in touch

South Australian aged care provider, ECH, is exploring the benefits of a new technology that will enable the continuation of supporting older people to maintain independent in the community.

<p>Screenshot of ECH's MyHomeReach program.</p>

Screenshot of ECH's MyHomeReach program.

ECH is embarking on a new project through MyHomeReach to better understand the potential benefits of access to electronic communication and information sharing and what may be involved in supporting both clients and staff.

Available across a variety of touch screen and mobile platforms, the MyHomeReach solution, developed by Irish based company Healthcomms, enables the care recipient to stay in contact with a network of both formal and informal carers that they nominate themselves while staying in their own home.

In March this year, ECH's community services division had a site launch of a new proof of concept trial that will be run out of its West office.

For the next six months, about 20 home services clients in the West region will be provided with the MyHomeReach application, as a proof of concept project.

In addition, a small number of home support workers will also be provided with mobile access.

The project will include evaluation of benefits for clients, carers, staff and the organisation. Regular updates on the project will be provided by the project team.

The MyHomeReach platform is delivered through a Samsung device in the hopes it will make it easier for home services clients to stay in touch with members of their care networks (including ECH), report on their wellbeing, keep track of their schedule (including when ECH staff are scheduled to deliver services) and manage their medication, amongst other things.

It will also offer benefits for carers and family members who might live some distance away. They will be able to log in to the system to see how their family member is doing, and when they were last visited by an ECH staff member.

The project has been a collaborative effort between ECH's ICT department and community services.

The first of 20 clients were enrolled in the trial in late April.

Benefits for the care recipient include:

  • Keep in contact with family, friends and formal carers through video or voice calls
  • Record details of daily health and wellbeing
  • Maintain own personal schedule with appointments and reminders
  • Add connections to frequently used services like grocery shopping, taxi, local hairdresser etc
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