Technology like TeleCareLine can play a vital role in helping care for an ageing population and that’s why in Hillingdon are offering it to those aged over 80 for free. By enabling residents to stay in their own homes we can increase people’s independence and reduce dependency on traditional social care services such as residential or nursing care, which can in turn result in significant savings for the council.
Tony Zaman, Director for Adult Social Care, London Borough of Hillingdon
The UK population is ageing, and in the London Borough of Hillingdon the number of people over 80 is 10,625, projected to increase by 13% over the next five years (ONS). In response to this, Hillingdon Council Adult Social Care has worked in partnership with NHS Hillingdon to develop a new model of care which effectively mainstreams telecare and reablement services, reducing reliance on residential care. The service aimed to create a fundamental shift in service provision away from institutionalised care, towards home-based support, risk prevention and early intervention.
What We Did
Hillingdon has offered a community alarm service to residents for some years, and following a review of the evidence from other areas in the UK, took the decision to extend this service by offering a telecare support service free of charge to residents over the age of 85 in April 2011, extended to over 80 in 2014. Similar telecare packages are offered free for the first six weeks as part of a re-ablement service and for those individuals who meet FACs (Fair Access to Care) criteria subject to a financial assessment. In addition, all residents of the borough may choose to self-fund.
Hillingdon’s TeleCareLine service provides varying levels of support, with eligible residents provided with a Lifeline Connect+ personal alarm, a MyAmie+ pendant, bogus caller alarm and a smoke detector as standard, and additional sensors provided based on the residents’ individual needs.
The new model of care aimed to support 3,000 people by the end of 2014/15 and to reduce/delay entry into residential care, prevent people needing ongoing care and support confidence during the re-ablement process.
A comprehensive financial model has been created to monitor efficiency, ensuring that resources are used in the most effective way and that residents are able to remain in their own homes for as long as possible, enjoying a better quality of life than may otherwise be the case.
As a result of the telecare and reablement service:
- £4.95m savings were generated (April 2011 - March 2014)
- Residential/nursing care placements reduced from 8.08 per week, to 2.13 per week
- Homecare hours purchased reduced by 10%
- Over 3,300 people are currently benefitting from telecare