Artificial intelligence in the home care industry: Combat the pressures of too many visits in too little time
Last week (29 September 2017), Unison released their report Making Visits Matter. The report included damning statistics from a survey of 1,000 care workers, which revealed three-quarters feared they were compromising the dignity of those in their care because of the pressure to fit in too many visits.
In response to the report, our managing director – Nigel Gittins – is calling for the care industry to react and adopt artificial intelligence as a possible solution:
A serious issue with care worker dissatisfaction
Nigel explains: “Unison’s survey shows there is a serious issue with dissatisfaction amongst care workers. They feel like they are unable to do their jobs well and care for those in our society who are in a vulnerable position.
“Yet this issue is already widely acknowledged in the industry. We know home care businesses are balancing the demands of providing quality care to a growing number of clients under tight cost-constraints. That’s all whilst trying to ensure staff are qualified, competent and satisfied.”
Could technology – and artificial intelligence – provide a solution?
With the report also stating that nine out of ten of those questioned felt they did not have time to chat to their clients, the industry urgently needs to find a solution.
“At Webroster, we strongly believe technology needs to be rapidly and more widely adopted in the care industry to help relieve the problem.
“It can sound futuristic but artificial intelligence is actually a hugely accessible and feasible solution that could offer a real contribution to solving the serious issues highlighted in Unison’s report,” Nigel adds.
Artificial intelligence is a broad term used to describe computers performing tasks that normally require human input and intelligence.
“Take our Optimiser engine, for example. It was developed in a four year partnership with the University of Nottingham and employs artificial intelligence to mimic the decisions of a care coordinator.”
The module, currently undergoing its first customer trials, relies upon users specifying and weighting their priorities and values. Based on this input, Optimiser pulls data from the system to create a roster that is not only optimised to those values but to also give care workers adequate time with clients.
Artificial intelligence for the care industry – a feasible and cost-effective option
Nigel explains: “Artificial intelligence does not make the coordinator’s role redundant. Instead, it ensures there is consistency each time a roster is created – you know your business’ values are being reflected in each rota. That can be quality of care, cost-efficiencies, staff satisfaction or all of the above.
“It also means organisations can forward-forecast more effectively, looking at care requirements, staffing numbers and finances in advance; relieving some of the urgent issues highlighted by Unison.
“Technology has the potential to revolutionise how care is managed. In light of today’s report, it’s clear a solution is urgently needed and we strongly believe technology could, and should, play a real role in that.”
If you would like to find out more about Optimiser – or Webroster.net in general – please get in touch with us. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01733 311 599