A pioneering new smart care system has been trialled successfully at a Blackwood care home in Stirling.
Clever Cogs technology, which can be installed in various compatible touch screen devices, influences everything from the ability to open curtains and switch on TVs, to ordering shopping and ensuring a constant connection with family, friends and carers.
It also provides extra security with features that allow users to see who it is at their door before they open it, as well as ‘alert’ and ‘help’ buttons which can connect residents to members of staff in seconds via the video link system.
Innovative care services provider, Blackwood, is passionate about embracing technology that improves the lives of people with disabilities and recently held the successful live trials of its latest ground-breaking technology at its Broom Court care home in Stirling.
During this first trial, each resident had a personal communication device, tailored specially to their needs, installed in their room for each of them to use and familiarise themselves with. Each resident, in time, will also be able to personalise their devices to reflect all of their own requirements and interests.
Customers and staff have now given the state of the art system the thumbs up, highlighting one of the main benefits is allowing customers to be able to view care takers online rotas so they always know who to expect and are constantly up-to-date with any changes.
Residents also benefit from the added extras the hi-tech system offers, from enabling them to receive updates on their favourite football team to being able to wind down at night with a movie.
Colin Foskett, Head of Innovation at Blackwood, said: “Our smart technology is one of the most exciting and innovative projects we have worked on to date. By putting our customers at the centre of the design process we are shaping a technology enabled care system that will improve people’s independence and help them control how their own care is delivered.”
Blackwood colleagues have been receiving constructive and intense training to ensure their expertise and skills, when using the hi-tech system, is transferred to the residents and the best service is given to those who have the device fitted in their homes.
Colin continued: “Working with our customers and staff in this personal approach is already delivering exciting outcomes. When we first spoke to customers to gauge their thoughts, we discovered a massive interest from those seeking a more technical system but most were worried they wouldn’t be able to work it.
“However, our residents at Broom Court were able to pick up how to use the hi-tech system with ease thanks to our colleagues’ guidance and help.
“As we develop the technology further over the coming year, we will be looking to add even more beneficial services that our customers will be able to learn about and use.”
Now, Blackwood is looking to expand the Clever Cogs trial by gaining some valuable feedback from its customers in Dundee.
Colin added: “Following on from the success of the Stirling trials, we are now reaching out to even more of our customers by trialling the smart system in Dundee.
“Moving to Dundee is going to bring different challenges – mainly due to our customers in this region being a lot more dispersed. We are currently developing further learning resources that will ensure users have complete independence and the ability to raise any concerns through user manuals and video guides that will feature on Clever Cogs screens to prevent this being a problem.
“We are looking forward to showing our customers in Dundee how they can benefit from the system and hearing what they think.”