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Empower Caregivers by Engaging Families

August 24, 2020

Guest Blog Submission by Emersewell

Issue

Many of us have families in long-term care homes and we always want to improve the lives of our loved ones. To that end, we went looking for ways of making our loved ones' lives better. Speaking with the learning team at Baycrest, we found out that the staff turnover rate is high and a single resident can have 10 or more caregivers over the course of a year. On top of that, a single caregiver may have to oversee as many as 40 residents. When we recently read the tragic report from the five LTC homes, where the army was asked to intervene, we knew we had to take action.

Because of a severe caregiver shortage and excess time not devoted to care, there is not enough time in the day to get all the residents cared for. As service providers, these empathetic souls struggle to provide the best, or any care possible to our loved ones and yours. As a result, caregivers are overworked, risk making mistakes, burnout easily and the quality of care declines.

Some of the time, not devoted to the care, is spent acquiring information about each resident. When they need it, it takes on average 3-5 minutes for caregivers to get that information, which is the time that could be spent caring for the residents.

In other cases, the training process for most homes has not prepared the caregivers for the demands of the job. As a result, it takes longer for the caregivers to learn about each resident and it blocks caregivers from remembering more granular care information of every single resident.

Solution

Learning from Baycrest, Schlegel Villages, members of OLTCA and from the COVID pandemic, we found a way that can help homes get the free and abundant resource that the families have to offer; consistent involvement and input in the care process, no matter how far away they may be. Their involvement is an active and ongoing element of care, not just a quarterly or yearly event. What we’ve developed aims to empower caregivers with knowledge of each resident from day one. With input from families, residents will now receive better care from caregivers who see them as people, with rich pasts and strong family support.

Benefits

The platform we’ve developed is called CareStory and was part of a 3-month quality improvement study at Baycrest in the Apotex Centre across 40 beds; at present, we are looking at introducing it across the entire complex, housing close to 400 residents. As well, CareStory has also been validated by the research department at Schlegel Villages. Knowing that a great deal of information has been provided by the family to homes already, we’ve partnered with PointClickCare to seamlessly integrate that information into CareStory.

Information pulled from CareStory is available to the caregiver with a quick scan of an encrypted QR Code. That scan shows the resident’s essential information, provides the ability to communicate directly with the family and gives the caregiver tools to better care for the resident, on-demand. This will reduce the time spent on acquiring information to near zero seconds and give time to better care for the residents with empathy and dignity.

In addition, accessing resident information as needed can allow new caregivers to focus on learning the policies and procedures of the home, instead of memorizing each resident’s information. This will prevent information overload from affecting their newest staff and giving them a better start in their career as caregivers.

Learn More

The CareStory basic package is a free forever product.  It also offers optionally paid premium features that can enhance the experience and efficiencies of caregivers, homes, and families! Basic package is enough to meet the needs of many homes!

You can learn more about it on the PointClickCare marketplace here:

https://marketplace.pointclickcare.com/English/directory/partner/1193862/carestory

Or contact us directly at info@emersewell.com

About Emersewell

Emersewell is devoted to curating and creating immersive experiences that will assist in various areas of healthcare including education and training, pain management, recuperation, and rehabilitation.

Emersewell’s vision is to become a world-renowned innovator in healthcare through the use of immersive technologies.