Improving incontinence care
Incontinence is a problem that affects as many as half of all care-home residents, and a total of 4 million people across the UK. Many choose to wear incontinence pads that absorb accidents, mitigating embarrassing situations until a carer can come and help. Current monitoring solutions on the market are one-time use and expensive, and if help is delayed, wet pads can result in UTIs and pressure ulcers. The latter alone cost the NHS around £49 million every year in hospital admissions.
One team supported by the Nominet Trust is making a difference. ChangeAlert is an integrated system that alerts carers to pads that need to be changed. A washable, long-lasting moisture sensor is placed into a pad, and connects to a simple monitoring bracelet worn by a carer, or to their smartphone. When the pad is wet, a signal is sent, and the carer can take action to change the pad immediately. ChangeAlert maintains the dignity of patients by removing the carer’s need to check and ask after them, while making actionable data accessible to those who need it.
The ChangeAlert system is mobile and reusable – a cheap, functional solution for patient wellbeing. The team behind the product has backgrounds ranging from IT to industrial engineering, and is looking to develop ChangeAlert further by integrating a management platform and app for use especially in care homes. The resulting data will independently highlight individual care homes’ speed of response, empowering families to choose the best option for their loved ones.
ChangeAlert is conducting a survey that ends in December 2015, inviting people to trial the product and provide valuable feedback for development plans. This is an innovative, wellbeing-focused device among the Internet of Things revolution. Send them a message through the website if you’d like to get or stay in touch.
Image ' Sweethearts' courtesy of Patrick.
Last updated: 10th of November, 2015