Social care technology

Innovative 4D technology to prevent falls in social care

An innovative 4D mapping solution could be set for a national roll-out in care homes, as the government announces a £1m funding injection through the Adult Social Care Technology Fund to allow further testing in London.

The technology, known as the Whzan Guardian monitoring system, uses wireless sensors to detect falls and alert carers to medical emergencies.

Pilots in care homes across England have already shown the technology can reduce falls by two-thirds (66%) and almost completely eliminate (97.5%) the need for an ambulance post-fall.

The technology has been developed in partnership with Sunderland City Council and has saved both local authorities and the NHS tens of thousands of pounds.

Now, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has announced that £1m will be made available to North East London Integrated Care Board (ICB) to further evaluate the technology across Redbridge Integrated Care System (ICS).

If successful, the solution could be launched across care homes nationally.

Helen Whately comment

The Adult Social Care Technology Fund was launched in April 2023 as part of efforts to digitise social care and identify promising solutions that could support the sector as a whole.

The DHSC is delivering the Digitising Social Care programme in collaboration with NHS England, who have invited industry partners, local authorities, care providers, and ICSs to submit expressions of interest for funding.

Three other projects have also been announced, including:

  • £1.2m for Lancashire and South Cumbria ICB to develop a medication management system to improve patient safety for 2,500 people
  • £1.1m for Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes ICB to develop pain assessment tools and robotic pets that help 9,250 adults in care homes/domiciliary care avoid hospital admissions
  • £1.1m for the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham to launch a series of digital technologies – including video and communications devices, smart home systems and fall sensors – for 300 people in domiciliary care

“The Care Tech Fund has identified technology with major potential to improve the quality of care while helping people live safely and independently,” explained the social care minister, Helen Whately.

“The technology will deliver savings for taxpayers, as falls cost the NHS around £2 billion every year.”

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Helen added: “Scaling up this technology is a vital part of our 10-year vision for social care reform. As the care needs of our population grow, technology will play an increasingly important part in social care that gives people the independence, freedom and security they deserve.”

Image credit: iStock


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