Reach alarm unit image

A telecare alarm service, run by socially-driven housing association Karbon Homes in the North East and Yorkshire, has been keeping clients feel safe and secure in their homes during COVID-19.

The alarm service gives residents peace of mind that if they need assistance, they can quickly get support from Karbon Homes.

One resident, Norman, has a Reach Digital At-Home Alarm Unit installed in his two-bedroom bungalow close to The Manors Extra Care Scheme, which is a member of the TEC Services Association (TSA).

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He told the TSA: “It has been difficult not being able to get out and to see friends but having the alarm system in place has given me reassurance that someone is there if I ever need them. Luckily, I’ve not had to use the system, but I know how to use it and I know it’s there is I ever need it.”

The alarm unit connects clients to a control centre should they need help. By pressing the button on the alarm unit, or on their remote pendant, residents are immediately connected to a trained operator who will arrange for help from neighbours, relatives, friends, a mobile warden, or emergency services.

This gives residents additional reassurances and enables them to remain independent with the security of knowing that they can quickly access assistance, should they need it.

Also benefitting from having an alarm unit installed into his home is Michael Thirtle.

Last year, Michael suffered a heart attack and has experienced problems with his eyesight, so he feels having a pendant and the mobile response service is paramount in helping him to live independently.

“I’d be lost without it,” he commented. “When I accidentally pressed the button, they called to check on me to make sure I was OK. The service was very good and Karbon were excellent on the phone to me and reassured me.”

Throughout the pandemic, Karbon’s telecare service has also helped residents feel connected and reassured that the have somebody to turn to in the event of an emergency. According to clients, this has been crucial during the COVID-19 lockdown period, as they’ve experienced reduced face-to-face contact.

Jon McDonald, Retirement Living Manager at Karbon Homes, concluded: “Telecare monitoring plays an important role in helping customers stay independent in their homes for longer. For many service users and carers, the Monitoring Centre keeps customers feeling confident that they’re safe in their home, whilst providing a ‘lifeline’ to help and support should they need it.

“The system is used by a range of our customers, from younger users who are disabled or unwell, through to older users who want that extra peace of mind.

“The service has been invaluable during Covid-19, helping Karbon’s customers feel safe and reassured and to demonstrate our commitment of how much we value this service, we have agreed to become members of the TSA.”

Karbon recently became members of TEC Services Association (TSA), an industry and advisory body for technology enabled care (TEC), which promotes and supports the TEC sector in the UK.

The TSA represents and brings together organisations from across government and local government, health and social care commissioners, telecare providers, housing associations, emergency services, charities and digital health businesses and technology health startups.

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