A senior care living facility can be a lonely and isolating place for residents in the best of times. But amid a pandemic such as COVID-19, the residential experience can quickly go from dire to bleak.
That’s exactly what happened across a privately owned, Canadian-based provider of accommodation care and services. With facilities in Canada, the U.S. and the UK, the organization provides residence for more than 55,000 seniors.
When the pandemic hit, the organization took measures to protect its patients from contracting the coronavirus, confining them to their rooms and banning family members from visiting. But this left residents feeling more isolated than before.
Technology to the rescue
Concerned about the well-being and mental health of its patients, the organization came up with an idea. What if it could acquire and distribute user-friendly tablets to its Canadian facility residents to enable them to keep in touch with loved ones?
Thus was born the “Compassionate Communication Project.” The goal: Reunite residents with family via the FaceTime® voice and video calling app on Apple® iPad® devices.
An Insight client for more than nine years, the senior care living organization reached out to see if we could help expedite obtaining and configuring iPad® tablets for residents in the Canadian facilities, including Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia.
Thanks to our long-standing partnership with Apple, we were able to rapidly secure 100 new iPad devices and have them sent to our integration lab. There, we imaged and configured the devices and pre-set them with passwords and the FaceTime® app. Our labs also provide hot swap and advanced exchange capabilities.
As soon as all of the devices for a location were configured, we shipped them directly to the elderly care facility ready to be used straight out of the box — no technical expertise required. The “Compassionate Communication Project” was completed within a month’s time.
Making Changes for Good
Staff put the devices right to use to improve the lives of facility residents and their loved ones. Families unable to enter the facilities have daily recreational contact and are able to participate in end-of-life communication.
Not only did this communication solution deliver peace of mind to the residents and their families, but it also inspired Apple and other elderly care facilities to initiate similar programs.
“This project hit close to home for all of us,” acknowledges an Insight account manager who worked closely with the client. “We all have elderly loved ones, so we wanted to be meticulous and service them properly. ... It felt genuinely rewarding that we had a hand in putting residents virtually in touch with their loved ones in the most challenging of times.”