What is the Telecare Falls Response pilot?

An elderly lady walking down some stairsWe are currently running a pilot project to see if care technology can help reduce the impact of falls people have in their homes.

As part of this work the Southampton City Clinical Commissioning Group (SCCCG) will be funding a limited number of patients to receive support from our City Telecare service. The pilot will identify a group of patients who do not currently use the telecare service to see if early intervention can help dramatically improve an individual’s improve an individual’s outcome if they have a fall.

If an individual does suffer a fall, the pilot will look at whether the service can help reduce the length of time an individual is awaiting rescue. This in turn could help reduce the number of ambulance call outs and hospital stays.

Who can be part of the pilot?

The pilot is focussed on individuals at high risk of falling, those living independently (i.e. not in any form of residential or nursing care setting including extra care or supported living) and those that would otherwise find it difficult to summon help if they did have a fall.

How do I get myself or a loved one on the pilot?

An elderly person meeting with a health professionalIndividuals will be selected for the pilot by a health professional and will be referred to City Telecare for inclusion in the pilot. For this pilot we are taking referrals from a select number of GP surgeries (Woolston Lodge, Portswood, Nicholstown, Adelaide Health Centre, Alma Road, Living Well Partnerships surgeries) and a small number of NHS services including the Wellbeing Team (SMS), Community Independence Teams, the Inpatient Therapy service at Royal South Hants Hospital and the University Hospitals Southampton (General Hospital) Fragility service.

You cannot refer yourself or another person directly.

Why don’t you give this service to everyone for free?

The pilot is being run to look at this very issue. While services cost money there are clearly gains to be made by investing in the right areas to prevent other costs and support individuals’ independence and wellbeing. Careful investment needs to be backed up by evidence of the benefits of using technology.

I currently pay for privately for telecare. Can I get the CCG to contribute to my costs?

No. The pilot is designed for those new to telecare services so we can track their journey from referral to installation and beyond.

Is there any charge for being part of the pilot?

The CCG will pay the cost of any installation of care technology in an individual’s home. For a limited time (six months) the CCG will pick up the weekly cost of individuals on the pilot receiving support from City Telecare’s ‘Gold’ responder service. An individual’s telephone provider will charge for calls made to the service form the patient’s landline. These calls will be charged at a local rate.

A keysafe is required to allow our responder to gain access to your home in an emergency. You can either install one yourself of we can do this free of charge. We will ask you to provide a spare key that will need to be permanently housed within the keysafe.

To be accepted on the pilot we ask for a small amount of your time and your agreement to use your information to help us with our evaluation of the project. More information about the processing of personal data is on our Privacy Policy page.

What happens at the end of the pilot?

Supporting an elderly gentleman with a walking stickEach individual will receive free support for six months to allow us to collect data relevant to the pilot. In month five the City Telecare Service will be in touch with individuals to discuss options for the end of the pilot. These will include:

  • Ending the use of the telecare service (telecare equipment can be uninstalled at no cost to the individual)
  • Moving over to the paid service. The individual will be offered the opportunity to continue to use Southampton City Telecare as a private pay customer (this could be done as a ‘Gold’ customer, continuing with the responder service support or as a ‘Silver’ customer with the customer’s own contacts taking up the responder role.
  • Referral to adult social care. If an individual’s needs have changed throughout the course of the pilot it may be appropriate for them to receive support from Southampton City Council’s Adult Social Care service. An assessment by a social work professional will look at whether the individual has unmet needs as defined by the Care Act (2014). Any assessment may conclude that telecare could be supported by social care as a way of meeting this unmet need.

Depending on the results of the pilot there may be an option to continue the funding from the CCG but decision this will be influenced by the evaluation of the pilot.

I’ve been referred to the pilot – what happens next?

The City Telecare assessor will be in touch by telephone to arrange an assessment and installation visit. Once arranged one of our friendly staff will visit your home to install a telecare unit and any other supporting technology you may need. We will talk you through how the service works and how to use the equipment. You may feel more comfortable if you have a carer or family member present at this meeting. As part of the installation you will be asked to complete a very short questionnaire which forms part of the pilot evaluation.

Once installed you can begin using the telecare equipment and service. Your health professional should have provided you with an information leaflet when they made their referral. You can also download a copy of the leaflet.

For more information contact city.telecare.services@southamption.gov.uk or telephone 023 8083 3675.