Over the last year there has been a lot of focus on the state of the NHS in general, but one area that has received a lot of criticism is care homes. But a lot of the problems that are being found aren’t unique to the NHS, but rather to care homes in general, and their approach to paperwork. Whether NHS or private, the volume of paperwork required on a day to day basis is staggering, and the end result is often reduced quality of resident care thanks to paperwork errors. Just a few of the problems that can be caused by paperwork include:
Incorrect Medical Care
When it comes to caring for the elderly and vulnerable, ensuring the correct medications and treatments are given in the correct doses at the correct times is essential. But while care home staff will get to know their residents as much as possible, it would be incredibly difficult to remember every single prescription or dosage, which is why they rely on paperwork. But when the paperwork is wrong, duplicated or not kept up to date, changes to medication can go undocumented and lead to serious health problems. Medication and medical care errors are ranked as the number one concern in care homes, with the blame largely pointed at the paperwork.
The employees are the lifeblood of any care home, so it is important that they are kept engaged and empowered to offer exceptional standards of care. Unfortunately, the sheer volume and repetitiveness of paperwork required means that many care home staff are unmotivated and distracted. Thanks to the value being placed on paperwork within care home, employees increasingly feel that the quality of their care is secondary to ensuring all of their paperwork is completed properly.
While time itself might be infinite, shift length isn’t, and a care home employee who has to fill in 50 forms a shift is going to have significantly less time to spend with their patients. Because there are very few systems in place to handle information centrally, staff are finding themselves duplicating information dozens of times during the day. All of this time spent writing the same information significantly reduces the time they have available to care for their residents.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. By implementing an effective content management solution complete with electronic signatures and centralised data storage, care homes could see a substantial reduction in both time spent on paperwork and resulting errors. For more information, or to arrange your free demonstration, get in touch with the Tipac team today.