Among other things, social workers are responsible for assessing all the services available in their area and understanding how they can best meet their clients' needs. There is a constant demand for improved care models that can reduce costs while still providing adequate support to those who require it. Telecare is one example of a fairly recent trend in the care industry, and it uses technology to provide care and assistance to the elderly and other vulnerable groups.
Telecare commonly uses alarm systems to alert a care professional, emergency service or friend or family member when a vulnerable individual has had a fall, has been taken ill or has had an accident. Similar to panic alarms, telecare alarms are positioned somewhere easy for the user to access, even if they are taken ill. Fixed position alarms are similar to those found in disabled toilets and alert people in the area that someone requires assistance. Portable alarms, such as those from Aster’s telecare range, are generally worn on a cord around the neck and can be pressed by the wearer if they fall or feel suddenly unwell. They can also be worn around the wrist. Such alarms can have fixed position receivers, which make a sound audible to people in the surrounding area, or portable receivers, which can be carried around by carers. There are different ways of funding such systems, with many providers offering weekly or monthly subscription services.
Telecare allows vulnerable individuals freedom and independence while knowing help is close at hand should it be needed. Technology such as personal alarms can give people the confidence to continue living in their own homes without feeling vulnerable and cut off. The ability to contact emergency services or other organisations in the event of an accident, fall or sudden illness is reassuring to individuals and their family members. Alarms can be set up to contact the user's preferred person or service in the event of an emergency, and many choose to alert a neighbour or relative. This provides peace of mind and allows those who may otherwise require round-the-clock care to enjoy a degree of independence without the associated costs of full-time care. A pendant alarm for the elderly is a great way of giving freedom and independence to someone who is capable of looking after themselves but is vulnerable to falls or has a medical condition which may cause them to need urgent attention from time to time. Aster offer a variety of telecare solutions for use in private accommodation or shared housing facilities. Whether an individual wants to remain in their own home, reside in a self-contained area of a family home with relatives or live in a sheltered housing or similar development, telecare offers a host of options to keep users safe.