Cheshire Residential Homes

Creating 21st Century care homes

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Modernising during a pandemic; medicinal support at the touch of button, Whatsapp calls to friends and family from anywhere and care plans that anyone could access at any point in time.

The Challenge

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the challenge for Cheshire Residential Homes Trust (CRH) was clear and common in the residential care sector: there was too much paper and communication wasn’t seamless.

Paper care plans did not support the direction of the trust, where information should be available to all carers, residents and family at the touch of a button. Even the systems that were digitised hit snags. ‘Dark spots’ in the homes meant that the internet couldn’t be used from everywhere. When a carer needed medicine or help from someone, they had to literally run for it. Inter-site communications, between the trust’s three care homes, were limited.

The trust had a four-year business plan to modernise and create the care home of the 21st century. They wanted to create real impact for residents and families, by enabling better care and information sharing and at the same time reduce their carbon footprint.

The Solution

The first step was to fix the on-site connectivity problems. The modernisations of the trust’s systems was being rendered pointless by poor internet and WiFi coverage.

We deployed fibre solutions across all three sites and a Meraki network, which eliminated the ‘dark spots’ of coverage the trust had previously experienced.

With the new connectivity we supported the trust in their ongoing adoption of Microsoft Teams and a fully hosted voice solution. By taking their communication online, using the best-of-breed connectivity we had installed, CRH really opened up the possibilities for care and communication, allowing them to have a real impact on the lives of residents and their families.

The Impact

With the speed and reliability of the new connectivity put into place during the COVID-19 pandemic, the most important impact for residents has perhaps been the ability to make Whatsapp and Facetime calls from anywhere. Residents can be in touch with their families whenever and wherever they want to, at a time when that communication has never been more important or valued.

Meanwhile CRH can provide those residents with better care. Their medicinal software can now be used from anywhere, meaning no-one needs to run for urgent equipment any more. Softphones means that the team can communicate with each other wherever they are, even if they are at different sites.

Electronic care plans are also available to anyone, from any location, at any point, meaning they can be quickly referenced or shared and discussed with residents and their family. The reduction in paper is allowing the trust to meet their carbon footprint goals.

“Working with Concert has been fantastic. Previously we didn’t have the support to take the trust in the direction we wanted to go. The transition since Concert came on board has been so significant – their solutions are user-friendly and easy to understand. We look forward to carrying on working together long into the future.

Gemma Stott, Administration Manager, Cheshire Residential Homes

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of a hosted phone system for a company?

You'll have peace of mind that you’ll always have access to the latest technology through free and automatic updates. This removes the usual expensive upgrade costs associated with traditional on-premise systems. We also include disaster recovery provisions built into the cloud, so your system will keep running even if a fire or flood strikes.

What level of in-house technical skills are required?

Concert can fully manage the setup and installation for you, and we’ll provide training for your users to ensure they can use the system properly. Because it’s based in the cloud, any changes can be made easily using online portals, or alternatively, our support team can take on implementing changes for you remotely.

Is the system expensive to install?

No. Choosing a cloud-based system removes the large upfront cost of traditional on-premise hardware, and the associated engineering costs needed to manage it. Cloud-based communication technology is the obvious choice for businesses who want to take advantage of the flexibility of a cloud software model.

Can I rely on the call or video quality?

As your calls will be routed through your internet connection, sufficient connection quality is important. We’ll ensure that you have a suitable connection for our product. We are also able to provide Leased line and Broadband products, meaning you can be assured of great voice quality at all times.

What happens if my requirements change?

A cloud-based system gives you flexibility. You pay on a per-user basis and you can scale up and down easily as your business grows or restructures, meaning that you only ever pay for exactly what you need, and can make changes to react quickly to business changes.

Can I keep my existing telephone numbers?

In the majority of cases, Concert can arrange for you to keep your existing UK landline phone numbers by porting the numbers over to our platform. The process can take a few weeks, but we’ll manage the whole process for you as part of your onboarding process.

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