Better care with superfast broadband
Ashton Park Care home provides residential care for the elderly in Newport.
Manager Helen Hughes ensures residents receive the best care to allow them to fulfil their lives and maintain their individuality within the care home.
'Going into a home' is a big step in people's lives, and residents can become isolated from friends and family if they cannot maintain contact.
Ashton Park already allows residents to use Skype video calls to contact friends and family around the world.
"Many more residents now have family living in various parts of the UK and the world. The internet gives the opportunity to keep in contact and actually see them, rather than just speaking on the phone."
Part of people's lives
The internet is increasingly a part of people's lives - giving access to information and services for a wide range of activities. Maintaining this access is essential to maintaining their individuality as they continue their lives in the care home environment.
"The internet is incredibly important; I for one couldn't live without it. Looking into the future of the next generation of residents coming into the home - if they have been used to the technology at home and then suddenly move into a care home that doesn't have the facility, it could be very disabling for them."
At Ashton Park, Helen Hughes has already seen the importance of the internet in making sure the home offers the best environment to their residents, particularly as future generations are used to the internet being a central part of their lives.
Superfast broadband might also extend the way the home operates. The home has 16 beds, so this really sets a limit to the care they can provide. However, there are many more elderly people in the area who may need some support but are perhaps not yet ready for full residential care.
The improved communication that superfast broadband can offer can allow care homes to extend their service to provide remote care to other people in need of support in their area.
Video calls can check the simple things, such as making sure people have got out of bed and taken their medication, or perhaps just give them the opportunity to have a chat - simple things that can help them lead independent lives in their own homes.
Superfast broadband can enable a new level of care for people who are not yet ready for full residential care - allowing more people to lead independent lives for longer, and allowing the care homes to extend their businesses beyond the physical constraints of the number of beds they can house.