Liz Kendall MP Leicester West and Shadow Minister for Care and Older People visited Tunstall Response this week, one of the UK’s largest telecare and telehealth monitoring centres, to see for herself the amazing impact these services have on people’s lives.
The centre regularly deals with a wide variety of calls, up to 5,000 calls a day, including users who have had an accident in the home such as a trip or fall, smelt smoke or gas, heard an unwelcome noise outside, received a suspicious or unexpected visitor at the door or just need to hear a friendly voice.
In addition to meeting to staff, she also talked to service users and patients.
The visit to the Tunstall centre in Doncaster showed me how simple technology can make a big difference in helping elderly people and patients with long-term health conditions stay healthy and living independently at home.
It was particularly helpful to speak to people like June Smith, who told me how her telehealth services have been a lifeline. June showed me how measuring her oxygen levels and blood pressure have helped her to better manage her heart condition. She said she really liked telehealth "because I'm in charge".
It’s like having a warm blanket wrapped around me, helping me decide if I need to go to the doctor or not.
Mary is 94 and a telecare fan. She added:
I’ve had the pendant for over 20 years and I got it when my husband died and I lived alone. I now live with my daughter’s family, but as they’ve out during the day, I still need it, just in case something happens. It’s a godsend.
Photo: Liz Kendall MP meets June and Mary