Technology delivered in the aged care sector has a range of business outcomes to produce - not least to improve the lives residents and staff alike. The Royal Commission highlighted a range of improvements that need to occur in aged care - and ICT technology has a role to play in helping achieve this.
The Importance of Networking in Aged Care
The Royal Commission has taken a look at the aged care sector and reported on a range of improvements. In this blog, we're going to focus on the role of technology in helping improve the life of aged care residents and staff alike.
Mobility is of course a major aspect of this - the ability to provide mobile communications opens up a wide range of use cases, but a technology investment in the right way can bring a whole host of major benefits.
Firstly, let's take a look at some insight into the Royal Commission report.
The Royal Commission and Aged Care
The recent royal commission into aged care provided a set of recommendations aimed at building a framework that aims to improve the care of older people in our community. This framework is very broad and focuses on all aspects of care for the elderly.
One key aspect is the modernisation of technology platforms. Just like any successful platform it will need a solid foundation which in any ICT environment is the network infrastructure including Wi-Fi.
The network infrastructure enables your traditional devices such as computers, laptops, printers, servers, and phones to connect allowing communication to each other and access to various data sources using both wired and wireless connections.
However, this is only the beginning especially when it relates to the recommendations proposed by the Royal Commission.
For example, The Royal Commission talks about:
- Enabling Independence for elderly residence
- Easing the transition between stages of care
- Ensuring our elderly citizens are safe
- Enabling access to care
- Enabling efficiency
- Enabling more care hours per resident
None of this will be possible without technology and more importantly without networks or Wi-Fi that works! How can we help achieve these aims, with the use of technology? Let's take a look..
Key Networking Technologies in Aged Care
Some of the key technologies that will deliver the above points will need properly designed and configured wireless networks, for example:
- Enabling Independence for elderly residents: Wi-Fi can enable this by using location services to ensure residents can move freely around the facility but still be contacted and located when required.
This is a big one for aged care residents. We all want to retain our independence, even when in a high-care environment. Wi-Fi allows everyone to seamlessly connect their devices and stay in touch with loved ones.
There's a host of other benefits though:
- Easing the transition between stages of care: Residents moving into a care facility may be used to accessing the internet for entertainment as well as communicating to loved ones.
- Wi-Fi can enable this by ensuring residents have access to appropriate internet services within their rooms as well as across the broader communal areas.
- Ensuring our elderly citizens are safe: Wi-Fi is a key underpinning requirement for many personal duress enabling care providers to quickly locate residents when they need assistance.
- Enabling access to care: Many nurse call systems on the market today rely upon Wi-Fi for mobile call buttons
Staff can also benefit greatly from an increased technology investment, especially around Wi-Fi and mobility:
- Enabling efficiency: Wi-Fi is fundamental for communication between carers and residents:
- Cares are constantly on the move and carrying wi-fi enabled communications devices they are able to understand the needs of the resident before attending the room.
- Wi-Fi is also under pins asset location products also commonly used to create efficiency and minimise time searching for key equipment like resident lifters or care devices.
- Reporting on contact hours per resident: This is something very time consuming to record if done manually and often difficult to substantiate when required:
- Wi-Fi can take some of the stress out of the stringent reporting requirements of accreditation.
- Wi-Fi is a key to the automated reporting of contact hours of clinicians and carers per resident by enabling location services to be used.
- Wi-Fi Grades
- Cisco DNA Spaces Applications
- Increasing AP Density
- Wi-Fi Surveys (Overview to the various types of RF Surveys)
- Wi-Fi Phone Dropouts
- Wi-Fi Surveys
Aged Care Wi-Fi: Summary
At the heart of the Royal Commission, the key aims are to ensure dignity and quality of care for aged care residents.
Technology only has a partial role to play, but in improving the lives of everyone in the aged care sector, it can have a really positive impact.
Hopefully this blog has helped to frame the type of benefits that you can hope to achieve from a technology investment. The actual use cases will vary in each facility, but there are commonalities:
- Residents: Access to Wi-Fi allows residents to keep entertained and stay in touch
- Staff: Increased mobility allows bedside care and applications such as prescription applications, food ordering and so on
You may already be hearing feedback from your users that your Wi-Fi is slow or constantly dropping out or might just be interested in understating if your current Wi-Fi has the capability to enable some of the possible solutions from above.
If so, then our tailored Wi-Fi assurance review will provide the answers you’re looking for. https://blog.iptel.com.au/wifi-assurance-review