Connected Health has unveiled Europe’s first online homecare package builder, allowing clients in Northern Ireland to pick and mix high-quality care services and medical technology to suit their individual needs.

The ‘Connected Health 2.0’ homecare configurator, which enables private clients and their families to build a bespoke package of care from a menu of options in a matter of minutes, is launched in Northern Ireland today (June 7) to coincide with Carer’s Week (June 6-12).

The new platform provides a one-stop-shop where packages of physical care can be easily integrated with wearable technology, medication devices and virtual care service offerings.

Coupled with the extensive road testing of third party medical technology designed to enhance the quality of domiciliary care, the new online service is part of Connected Health’s drive to deliver what it calls ‘homecare 2.0’ in Northern Ireland.

Rachel Brammer, who is leading the project at Connected Health, said: “The Connected Health 2.0 Intelligent Care programme is reimagining the way home care is delivered in Northern Ireland and beyond.

“The Connected Health 2.0 homecare configurator is a key element of our ‘homecare 2.0’ drive, as it empowers clients to create their ideal personalised care packages in much the same way that they would build-in the elements of a new car or mobile phone contract.

“The platform provides the option to blend high-quality physical care with technology in order to deliver a more holistic, and person-centred, package of support that is tailored to each individual’s needs. Essentially, we want to keep our loved ones out of hospitals and care homes, and in the comfort of their own home.”

Users of the platform can simply build what they need into their care package by adding required services and products into their online shopping basket and placing an order. They can select the number of hours of physical on-site care they need, and the volume of virtual daily check-ins required. They can also add medical technology such as activity monitors, medication adherence monitors and incontinence detectors.

Once a client or family member configures a care package, they will receive a suitability assessment phone call from Connected Health, followed by an on-site risk assessment in their home, before their bespoke homecare service begins.

Ms Brammer said the Northern Ireland project is “the first of its kind in the homecare market in Europe”.

Rebecca Vogel, Director of Technology: “We have developed Connected Health 2.0 over a long period of time, with extensive input from stakeholders, as well as our technology partners which include Amazon, Microsoft and Arrow Electronics. We are incredibly excited about the launch of Connected Health 2.0 which focuses on re-engineering, modernising and disrupting the entire homecare sector.

Ms Brammer continued “With an ageing population, living longer and limited physical capacity to deliver care, we need to be innovative and find sustainable solutions which is what Connected Health 2.0 delivers. We are already working closely with Trusts to provide solutions for delayed discharge and hospital to home pathways utilising this blended approach.’’

All medical devices offered in the Homecare Configurator have been fully tested in the field through Connected Health’s innovative ‘Living Lab’. The ‘Living Lab’ process involves a rigorous 5-step assessment in real-life care scenarios to identify the best viable solutions that clients, their families and their carers can rely on and trust. It further provides valuable data to medical technology companies who are developing technologies to fit into current homecare pathways.

Only products that are proven to truly solve a problem for homecare for clients are awarded ‘ConnectedTEC Gold’ certified status and considered for inclusion in the company’s tech-enabled care programme. Using this process, Connected Health is also committed to becoming the industry-recognised accreditation provider for new technologies in the homecare sector.

Ms Brammer said the roadmap for development of the service is clear. “Connected Health 2.0 is a scalable service that has reimagined home care and provided a solution in the provision of intelligent care for all. Phase 1 is to offer bespoke homecare packages throughout the UK and Ireland over the next two years. During that time, Connected Health will become the recognised accreditation service for new technologies in the homecare sector.

“Phase 2 of the project is to expand our vision of homecare internationally, providing remote certified training and global deployment of care and technology within 5 years.”