Digital Social Care Records bring benefits to local care home and its residents

Digital Social Care Records bring benefits to local care home and its residents image

Home » Digital Social Care Records bring benefits to local care home and its residents

Noticing a shift towards digital record keeping within the care industry, a care home in Bedford decided to trial Digital Social Care Records (DSCR) with its staff.

DSCRs allow care home staff to securely access relevant information within residents’ health and care records – helping staff provide better and safer care. The aim of the trial was to give staff time to adjust and gain confidence in using the digital system before a move to digitisation is made compulsory. Since summer 2021, the nursing home has been successfully using DSCR as part of its day-to-day working.

Peter’s Place is one of five care homes across Bedfordshire owned by Apex Care. Home to 13 residents, the nursing home provides vital support for adults with learning and physical disabilities.

Heidi Perret, Deputy Manager of Peter’s Place, has praised the easy-to-use system as a ‘game-changer’ – stating it helps gives care home staff a ‘rounder, more holistic picture of the care that residents are receiving through live, real-time reporting’.

All staff on shift have access to a device which allows them to capture and insert resident information at the point of care, meaning up-to-date information is available immediately. Electronic medical records and digital social care notes can be accessed from anywhere in the nursing home, alleviating the need for staff to visit the office to gain resident information and saving valuable time.

Staff can also easily track if residents have eaten, emptied their bowels and see how much fluid they’re consuming, with a colour-coded system alerting staff of any overdue tasks or areas of concern. This enables personalised care and support to be provided to residents to help avoid complications from occurring – for example, staff can offer additional fluids and fibre to a resident who is flagging amber for bowel movements. Peter’s Place has also personalised the records to suit its individual needs by adding epilepsy monitoring to the digital interface, which would immediately alert staff if a resident was having a seizure. 

Previously, Peter’s Place were reliant on a paper-based system which slowed down the sharing of important information. Note-taking was time-intensive, and staff were heavily reliant on hand-written notes and verbal handovers, increasing the risk of human error and inaccuracies. Staff now have access to accurate information which they can refer to at any point of the day helping to reduce the chance of information getting missed.

Heidi has also praised DSCR for supporting management in the population of care plans.   By having an up-to-date picture of resident care, the management team is assisted in the forward planning of delivery and staff resource. This proves particularly beneficial for one-on-one service users where the digital notes form key evidence for funding and medication reviews. Staff can provide a live picture of resident care without having to undertake time intensive reviews with paper documents.

DSCR also proves extremely useful for patients in Peter’s Place who are nonverbal. The system allows for photos to be uploaded, allowing staff to visually evidence the care patients receive. These time-stamped photos also allow staff to document and monitor any injuries residents have, enabling them to see if things are progressing or if additional measures are required.

Heidi added: “The care system flows a lot better because of the digital notes. The person-centred system allows for a more rounded picture of care, which supports with the day-to-day running of the nursing home. I can’t imagine going back to a paper system.

“Staff are reassured as they can evidence the care that they are providing. Once an entry or photograph has been uploaded, it is there for everyone to see with no risk of being lost or misunderstood. This also helps management support staff development and training as we can flag issues before they arise, and support staff in making sure their notes are the best they could possibly be, to enhance the care they give to our residents”.

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