Torbay-based Care Group becomes Digital Health ‘Champion’

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Torbay residents who receive care at home are being supported by carers to access local health, social care and wellbeing services using the internet thanks to an award-winning new service.

Bay Care domiciliary care group provide care in the community for Torbay and Devon, and are rated ‘Outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission.

Some of their care workers, who help those people in the community who need to be cared for at home, have completed digital training so they can show their housebound clients how to access local online resources like appointment-booking and medication-ordering at GP Practices right through to self-referral services and self-help resources.
Independent consumer champion Healthwatch Torbay are offering local organisations and the general public this free award-winning digital training as part of their Ageing Well Torbay funded project designed to help reduce social isolation in older people by showing them exactly how they can use the internet to access health and social care services.

The project website has been redeveloped this year into a free ‘E-Learning’ tool which offers people the chance to complete a free online training course in their own time, from the comfort of their own device and become a community ‘Digital Health Champion’. This is available for free via www.digitalhealthdevon.co.uk.

17 Bay Care workers have completed this training and have since made over 20 home visits to different clients to share what they have learnt to support them to access online healthcare resources. They are one of the first community organisations in the bay to become a ‘Digital Health Devon Champion’ , a special status awarded to those organisations in the county committed to supporting the people they work with to be ‘digital health’ friendly.

“We are delighted to achieve Digital Health Devon Champion status,” said Katrina Green, Director of Bay Care Domiciliary Care Ltd, “Looking after someone can sometimes come with its difficulties, including getting the right support. But this training has really helped both us and our clients in showing them some of the very useful resources out there on the internet that can benefit their health & wellbeing. I’d like to thank and congratulate all our wonderful carers for going above and beyond to take this invaluable training. ”

The Healthwatch Torbay Digital Inclusion Project is an Ageing Well Torbay funded project. Ageing Well Torbay is a 6 year programme funded by the Big Lottery Fund using National Lottery Funding.

In October 2018 the pilot project in Torbay won a national ‘Highly Commended’ award in the ‘Giving people the advice and information they need’ category at the 2018 National Healthwatch Excellence Awards. The project has now expanded into the wider Devon area, supported by the NHS in Devon and the Innovation in Healthy Ageing programme, hosting drop in sessions at GP Practices and community venues across the county.

If you’re interested in getting involved or helping support the Digital Inclusion Project, please call free on 08000 520 029 or email digital@healthwatchtorbay.org.uk.

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