Young nurse

By David Lynes, Managing Director – Unique IQ

Our customers are on the frontline against coronavirus. They are out there delivering essential care at home to some of society’s most vulnerable people. And they are out there keeping critical buildings disinfected and clean. We’ve been left in awe of the compassion and determination the people we work with are showing day in, day out, despite considerable risks to their own health and wellbeing.

Our own contribution may be small, but we have not underestimated the importance of keeping our customers going through this challenging time. We know that care workers and cleaners up and down the country are relying on technology, and it’s our job to be here to support them.

So, whilst we might now be working from home, our team is still answering calls, delivering training, troubleshooting and working on our software. We’re adapting our technology as the situation evolves, developing new features in response to what our customers are telling us they need. Here are just a few examples.

Business continuity

Prioritising clients according to need quickly became a pressing issue for many of the home care organisations we work with. In response, we added a ‘Rating’ feature free of charge to our IQ:careplanner software, which enables home care agencies to categorise clients based on the severity of their needs. Service users can be grouped, for example, into ‘Red, Amber, Green’ or ‘High, Medium, Low’ to help with allocating staff.

Connecting families

Virtual meeting and digital communication tools have come into their own during the coronavirus outbreak for obvious reasons. Like many others, we’ve seen a rise in the use of our client and family portal in recent weeks. The portal makes it possible for service users and family members alike to view details of the care they’ve received, such as visit notes or photographs of activities, and to leave comments or requests. It’s a great way for families to stay involved in the care of a loved one, even when they have to keep their distance.

Keeping in touch

Talking of keeping in touch, we’ve seen many of our customers using the batch text and email function within our software to keep their teams up to date with vital information. Within IQ:timecard, it’s possible to create messages to go out in bulk to particular groups of staff – such as those next on shift following a change in procedure – or even with an emergency message. It’s a quick and easy way to make sure frontline staff have the details they need to keep themselves safe when the situation is rapidly changing around them.

Slowing the spread

Finally, the very first thing we did when the impacts of coronavirus began to be felt, was to introduce mandatory tasks into our IQ:timecard mobile app, that are designed to help prevent the spread of the disease. Tasks including hand washing, sanitising mobile phones and checking for signs of symptoms were added into the appointment checklists of frontline staff at the request of our customers, to be ticked off before clocking out. Our customers have told us these are useful for both reminding their teams to carry out essential preventative actions, as well as providing evidence to their own clients that appropriate measures have been taken.

It’s truly humbling to be able to support the people who are out there on the frontline against coronavirus, and it’s a responsibility we take seriously. If you’d be interested in learning a bit more about how we’re doing this through our technology, then please get in touch with us.