Should a care home choose Remember-I’m-Me Care Charts or Mycarematters?

Care Charts v Mycarematters

For those care homes looking to improve their person-centred care there are now two tools to help which appear, at first glance, to be doing the same thing: providing a quick at-a-glance view of a person’s needs and preferences in their room. Both systems ensure that all members of staff and visiting professionals interacting with a resident are quickly aware of the small things that can make a big difference. Both offer the Twist-N-ViewTM facility, enabling the information to be turned to the wall when not needed, displaying instead an attractive picture on the wall. And both have won awards for the simple and effective way in which they assist delivery of person-centred care.

Where they differ is in how the information is collected and shared. The Remember-I’m-Me Care Charts have a laminated surface on which information can be written, wiped off and updated whenever required. Mycarematters profiles are created / updated online and printed out: the Mycarematters Twist-N-View hanger has a pocket to display a person’s profile.

There are pros and cons for both systems, but the one significant advantage of Mycarematters is that it can easily be shared with other services. The simplest way is to supply a printout, but it is also quick and easy for anyone with the person’s name, date of birth and Mycarematters code to retrieve a person’s profile from www.mycarematters.org. So when a hospital phones to ask for information about one of your residents because the printout has gone missing, you can just provide the resident’s Mycarematters code and point hospital staff in the direction of the online facility.

There are other benefits offered by the Mycarematters system. In the version about to be released there is space to add information about Advance Care Plans, DNARs, Power of Attorney for each resident and more, providing a central record of information that is quick and convenient to access when needed. You will be able to give family members access to their relative’s profile so they can view and contribute to the information held.

People like to work in different ways so what works best for one environment is not necessarily the best for another. You can of course use both if you wish: hang a laminated chart in your residents’ bedrooms for updating by hand, and create online profiles that can go with a resident in the event they need a stay in hospital.

Whichever method you choose, you’ll be helping your staff and others to better meet a person’s needs when they are unable to express those things for themselves: enabling everyone interacting with them to engage in meaningful conversation, to know their likes and dislikes, to make an emotional connection. It’s the least they deserve.

We’re launching a major update to Mycarematters in the next few days. Contact us to chat through the options and special offers available.

Please Tell Me… a new Life Story book

We are often told that nothing can beat our Care Charts for getting information in front of everyone interacting with a person, but that’s not to say the learning should stop there. Our charts provide a snap-shot, at-a-glance view of a person’s needs and preferences, but should not be thought of as a replacement for life story work.
Regardless of whether it is family or staff members who spend time with a person to collect their memories and what matters to them now, the process can be extremely rewarding for both parties. And that information can of course help carers provide personalised and appropriate care, either in someone’s home or in a care home.
So we were very excited to see John’s Campaign new book Please Tell Me… a place to help someone share a childhood memory, the words of a favourite song, what made them happy in their early years. It is designed to follow the chronology of the person’s life, and the open questions provide opportunities for conversations.

Available as single books or in packs of 10. Click here to purchase…

 

Spread the cost of your care charts

There are hundreds of care homes who have been using their Care Charts for over three years now, and we frequently get feedback as to what good value for money they offer.

Nevertheless, we understand the constraints cashflow can impose, and we’d like to do what we can to help you incorporate Care Charts into the daily life of your organisation.

So we are delighted to offer you the opportunity to spread your payment over up to 6 months*. Your payment schedule can be set up in a matter of minutes; just email us to say what you’d like to order and over how many months, or call us on 01403 210485 to chat it through if you prefer. It won’t cost you a penny more and you can delight your staff, inspectors, residents and their families with this care-enhancing device, whilst minimising the impact on your cashflow.

*Min: £100 Max: £1,000 Max timescale: 6 months

Founder awarded grant for product development

UnLtd-AwardWinner_FullColour_3000px

 

We were delighted to hear that our founder Zoe Harris has been selected as one of 29 social entrepreneurs to receive funding from UnLtd as part of the The Coutts Foundation Solutions for an Ageing Society programme.

The competition was fierce, with the final group selected from over 250 applicants, and what clinched it for Zoe was the simplicity of her solutions, and her clear vision of what she could achieve with the grant on offer.

“The judges immediately ‘got’ the charts, and liked the fact that we have evidence to demonstrate they really do make a difference in a wide range of caring environments,” explained Zoe. “They also understood the need to address the communication issues people face when being cared for in their own homes.”

“The Fast Growth Awards are our opportunity to recognise people with brilliant solutions to the social problems we face as a nation,” said Cliff Prior, CEO at UnLtd. “Together with our partners, we help them scale nationally and internationally for greater social impact. We’re excited to see such a diverse group of entrepreneurs this year, tackling problems in a huge variety of sectors, and we look forward to supporting them as they scale over the coming year.”

This funding allows Care Charts UK to get cracking on a five part project to bring a range of home care communication tools to market. First stage is a questionnaire, where we want to collect the opinions and thoughts of carers who have been or are caring for someone in their own home (whether paid or unpaid), as well as from those who have been or are being cared for. Second stage will be a focus group brainstorming the ideas collected. Third stage will be developing prototypes to trial, fourth will be to conduct trials and adapt designs as required, and the fifth stage will be to make the range available nationwide.

This is a link to the questionnaire, which we would very much like all carers, both paid and unpaid, and those being cared for, to complete: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CCUKhomecare.

Epsom Hospital puts Care Charts at heart of dementia care

“I couldn’t possibly have hoped for a better result,” said Sue Cook, the Older Persons Assessment and Liaison for Dementia (OPAL) team leader at Epsom Hospital, part of Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust.

We were meeting after their three month trial of the Twist-N-View Display Chart, which they are using to assist in the care of patients with a dementia diagnosis. They have chosen to insert a picture of a forget-me-not into the clear front pocket of the Care Chart, and have included the charts in their training programme so everyone from porters to consultants is aware of the significance of the bright blue flower, and that information about a patient can be found on the reverse.

“I was concerned that staff would see it as yet another task to be completed,” Sue continued. But very soon after the charts were introduced and families were encouraged to complete a chart for their relative, the positive comments started to flow.

“Nursing staff realised that the charts gave them the ability to engage much more quickly with a patient who might not be able to communicate reliably,” said Sue, “because information is immediately available to them, and it gives non-nursing staff like porters an opportunity to open a conversation with the patient, when before they wouldn’t have access to simple information like their favourite foods, or important people in their lives, what they do or did for a living.”

“We had one lady,” Sue continued, “who had nobody in the world, friend or family, and the only piece of information we managed to find out was that she had a cat called Penny. So that went on the chart, and it gave everyone interacting with her something they could talk about. And we sang happy birthday to another patient, because we saw his date of birth on his care chart. Of course, everyone’s date of birth is on their records, but that’s just seen as a bit of admin, whereas something written on the care chart is about the person, a reminder that, even if they can’t speak or do anything for themselves, they have history, family, things they love and hate, like the rest of us.”

The hospital is now rolling the charts out to more wards, with the ultimate aim of incorporating Care Charts into the daily life of every ward across the Trust.

Read about how Epsom Hospital is adopting care charts and other innovations to better care for people with dementia. Epsom Hospital News

To read about the results of trials in community hospitals click here.


Over 18,000 people requiring care now benefit from Care Charts

Map of care homes using care charts
Zoe Harris with a map of the UK showing where the award-winning Remember-I’m-Me Care Charts are being used.

PJ Care’s decision to introduce Remember-I’m-Me Care Charts into the daily life of their neurological care centres means that over 800 care homes and hospitals are now using these award-winning communication tools. Trials have demonstrated that Care Charts not only increase the quality of life of those being cared for, but can also provide peace of mind for their relatives, and boost staff morale.

“I first came across Zoe’s charts when she was nominated for the Innovation Award in the Great British Care Awards” explained Jan Flawn, Founding Chair of PJ Care. “I was made aware of them via one of the category judges and it struck me immediately what a simple yet effective idea this was. We pride ourselves on maximising the quality of life of each person we care for, so our staff members are highly trained and we have excellent staff / resident ratios, but it’s still difficult to be absolutely sure that every member of our team is aware of – and kept up-to-date with – a resident’s needs and preferences when communicating is a challenge. We chose the Twist-N-View version of the charts because they allow us to make key information instantly available whenever a staff member needs it, and keep it private when not being referred to.”

“The first Remember-I’m-Me Care Chart was designed to assist in the care of my husband,” explained Zoe Harris. “He spent his final 13 months living with advanced dementia in a care home, unable to communicate his needs and preferences. The care home recognised the importance of collecting information about an individual, but had no reliable method by which to ensure the information was made available to all carers and any other members of staff interacting with their residents. That first design is still popular, but I was aware that in certain environments it was difficult to hang the chart in a discreet manner, so we developed the Twist-N-View to address this issue.

“I’m very proud that prestigious care providers like PJ Care have recognised the value of these cost-effective and simple to use charts, and that they are having a beneficial impact on the quality of life of more than 18,000 people and their families, as well as helping to boost staff morale.”

PJ Care is a leading provider of specialist neurological care and neuro rehabilitation for people aged eighteen and over with progressive or acquired neurological conditions.

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Getting to know each other

Carer's Chart

We’re always going on about the importance of needing to know about a resident’s needs and preferences, but what about your staff? Might they like to share what they like and dislike, and might they learn something from the exercise as well?

Encourage your staff to share what matters to them by completing one of these free charts. With everyone’s agreement, display them where other staff, residents and their families can see them, creating an opportunity to appreciate what is important to each other. Generate a sense of mutual respect throughout your community, and create opportunities for meaningful interaction between every member of that community.

If you are using our Care Charts for your residents you will see that we have used the same symbols* as those on the resident’s charts. This helps make the point that we are all similar in having needs and preferences, that whether we are a carer or someone being cared for, we all have things in our lives that can cause pleasure or distress.

Download as many copies of the Carers Chart A4 as you need, encourage your staff to share, and develop the relationship and mutual respect between staff and residents and their families. Indeed, it may be appropriate to invite family members to participate as well.

And if you’re not already using our Care Charts for your residents, give us a call now, on 01403 210485, or email enquiries@carechartsuk.co.uk for further information.

*If you are using Style 2 and would like a Carer’s Chart in the same style please send us a request via email to enquiries@carechartsuk.co.uk.

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