What is telecare?
Telecare is a service that enables people, especially older and vulnerable people, to continue to live independently in their own homes.
Telecare is the remote monitoring of a person's health and wellbeing achieved through the clever combination of a 24-hour telephone link to the monitoring centre using a variety of unobtrusive sensors and detectors.
When installed, the sensors can indicate if there is a problem in the house such as:
- A build-up of escaping gas from a cooker.
- A flood from taps being left on.
- Part of the home being too hot (e.g. cooker left on) or too cold (e.g. heating not working)
It can also indicate if a person has a problem, such as:
- Having fallen and being unable to get help.
- Having wandered outside the home at an inappropriate time.
Information on practical advice on daily living equipment can be found on our Equipment, Adaptations and Practical Support web page.
Who is telecare for?
Telecare can be used by all age groups, however, is predominately used to assist older people and vulnerable groups to remain within their own homes for as long as possible.
Telecare has been found to be particularly useful to:
People who are becoming increasingly frail and are at risk of falling.
People who have little support and may need the reassurances the service provides; are struggling to cope at home, and may be regularly admitted to hospital.
People who need support when dealing with environmental risks in the home such as fire or flood.
People with need extra support to live independently, for example if they have a learning disability.
People with cognitive difficulties such as failing memory.
Those who need links to other agencies.
Telecare can offer a safer environment that can prevent a resident having to go into hospital, or to allow an earlier and safer discharge from hospital/care home.
Telecare can support people at home, providing an enhanced feeling of safety and security for both the resident and their carer as well as providing a response in an emergency 24 hours a day.
Telecare is not intended to replace human contact but is designed to support safety, independence and wellbeing and to support carers.
What do I need to receive telecare?
You will need to have a telephone line with an electric socket nearby to enable the service to be provided. The sensors themselves send their information via the telephone line to a call centre. As a result you will be responsible for the cost of these 'telephone calls' which occur when the equipment is activated and the alarm raised.
What are the benefits of telecare?
Enabling people to stay living in their own homes safely
Providing support and reassurance for carers
Help to prevent falls or accidents
Prevent unnecessary admissions to hospitals
Helps people to leave hospital quicker
Provides a rapid response to crisis situations.
How do I receive telecare?
The process starts with an assessment of need to identify if a Telecare product could help in supporting you at home.
If it is felt to be appropriate, with your agreement, they will contact the Service Provider to see if the sensors you need can be fitted in your home.
Telecare sensors leaflet
Further help and advice can be obtained by contacting the Safe+Well service provided by NRS Healthcare. The service is run by qualified experts who can provide older or disabled people with advice, information, assessments and a wide range of purchase options.
They can recommend trusted shops and pharmacists in the local area where essential aids such as walking sticks, trolleys and bathing equipment can be purchased. Residents can also visit the Safe+Well centre in Theale for product demonstrations and to buy equipment. Contact Safe+Well on 0118 903 2411 or for more information or visit www.safeandwell.co.uk/berkshire.
The Adults, Family and Local Offer Directory can also assist you by providing you with details of some of the many suppliers you could contact to obtain equipment to support your needs.
What is the cost of the service?
The Lifeline unit while in your home has a weekly charge for the rental of the equipment and the monitoring service. You will be charged for this service even when in hospital, away from the home, or in respite care. The charge ceases once the equipment itself has been returned.
For more information visit our Lifeline page.
Assistive Technology Group
Assistive Technology (Technology Enabled Care / Telecare) has a key role to play in the modernisation of social care and health. It offers a range of possibilities for individuals, through the application of technological advances in social care and health settings. Devices range from gas detectors to location devices and smart phone applications
It can enable people to remain living in their own homes for longer with greater independence, confidence and safety, and in many cases reduce the need for emergency care.
The Windsor and Maidenhead Council Assistive Technology Group is a group of residents, voluntary organisations, local service providers and council staff who all have an active interest in Assistive Technology and increasing the use of technology to support people in their own homes.
The Windsor & Maidenhead Council Assistive Technology Group principal activities are:
Work in partnership to ensure that Telecare services are more widely accessible, acceptable and understood by all those who could benefit from Telecare
Explore innovative ways in which Telecare can be used to improve services to the benefit of local residents
To help inform the delivery of Telecare services in the Royal Borough
Review what equipment is available
Identify what equipment members would consider works best
Identify what the issues and barriers are to using Telecare
Making Telecare accessible
Sharing outcomes of the group with colleagues and other residents
Championing Assistive Technology (Technology Enabled Care / Telecare)
Planning for the future
We have a programme of projects that support health and wellbeing, quality of life and social engagement of many local residents including:
We design and run an annual event at which practical demonstrations, information on a wide variety of products and services are promoted to all Royal Borough residents
Piloting new methods of communication for residents within the Royal Borough and their families (sometimes located outside of the area) to reduce loneliness and social isolation, particularly for people with long-term conditions such as dementia, Parkinson’s, limited mobility
Reduce the incidence of falls
Support carers in all aspects of the important role they play – as well as promote their own health and quality of life
Piloting of new products
Development of more projects is a really exciting part of our health and wellbeing action plans, supported by the Better Care fund. The involvement of enthusiasts who are keen to contribute are welcome.
Group Members Include:
Royal Borough - commissioning
Royal Borough – operational staff
Alzheimers Dementia Support http://www.alzheimersdementiasupport.co.uk/
Older Persons Advisory Forum
Berkshire Carers Service http://www.berkshirecarers.org/
Healthwatch Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead http://www.healthwatchwam.co.uk/
Care Response http://www.careresponse.co.uk/
Grey Matters Consultancy http://www.grey-matters-consultancy.com/
Maidenhead Mencap http://www.mencapmaidenhead.co.uk/
Community Matron (Ascot area)
Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead CCG http://www.windsorascotmaidenheadccg.nhs.uk/
Age Concern Windsor http://www.ageconcernwindsor.org.uk/
Do you have a keen interest in Assistive Technology? Are you willing to Champion Assistive Technology? Would like to join a group of like-minded individuals?
The group meets on a bi-monthly basis.