South Australian aged care provider Life Care has rolled out a new communication tool to all of its residential aged care facilities to ensure residents and their family members can keep in touch.
The Life Care LIVE app has been purpose-built for the provider using customer experience platform hayylo to keep residents and their loved ones connected.
It allows registered residents and family members to share photographs and videos with each other.
Life Care CEO Allen Candy said the app has helped keep residents connected with loved ones during COVID-19 visitor restrictions.
“We also have many residents whose family members live interstate or overseas, or work irregular hours, so they’re not able to see their loved ones as often as they’d like.
“If for whatever reason they aren’t able to visit, family members know they’ll receive regular updates about their loved ones that they can access anywhere, anytime to help them stay connected,” Mr Candy told Australian Ageing Agenda.
Life Care LIVE launched at the provider’s Gaynes Park Manor residential care home in June this year as a trial during heightened visitor restrictions in aged care.
Following the success of the trial, the app rolled out to Life Care’s remaining four residential aged care homes in Everard Park, Glen Osmond, Old Reynella, and Aldinga Beach in July.
“In the first month of trialling the app we saw great uptake by families and our staff, with more than 100 photos, videos and updates shared.
“Our staff have received lots of positive feedback from families about the app, who feel reassured their loved ones are happy, healthy and enjoying themselves in our homes.”
Among those happy family members is Kent Techritz, who lives 13,000 kilometres away in Cyprus.
His parents Vic, 91, and Audrey, 92, live at Life Care’s Gaynes Park Manor (pictured above).
“I only get to see mum and dad in person once a year when I come back to Australia, but I don’t know when the next time will be because of the coronavirus travel restrictions,” Mr Techritz said.
“Seeing my parents on the app reassures me they’re being well looked after. I get regular updates which brings a sense of closeness to our relationship, despite the distance.”
Life Care is planning to offer the app to more clients and with additional services.
“We have plans to further expand the app in coming months to our independent living residents and home care clients, who will be able to view and book allied health and fitness services online, request maintenance and access financial statements and payment information,” Mr Candy said.
Main image: Life Care Gaynes Park Manor residents Audrey and Vic Techritz