The Northern Health and Social Care Trust in partnership with the University of Ulster recently held an information session for older people in Magherafelt to make them aware of services and technology which is available to help them remain independent in their own homes for as long as possible.
Those attending the information session at Magherafelt Day Centre heard about the different day care programmes available including the Stepping Towards Enhanced Postural Stability (STEPS) programme and the Positive Living Programme. STEPS focuses on increasing and improving physical activity levels; teaching skills to assist with improving balance, leg muscle strength and movement, control and posture. Most importantly the programme helps older people to remain confident in their daily activities and reduces the number of falls and fractures which would have an impact on their health and wellbeing.
They also heard about the Positive Living Programme which provides participants with the opportunity to explore and learn skills to enable them to identify and overcome stressors in their lives and enable them to live independently within their own community.
Brian Serplus Head of Residential, Day Care and Supported living in the Northern Trust said,“Those attending the information session also had the opportunity to try out different technologies which are widely available for purchase from a range of suppliers. These included mobile phone apps to enable older people to use and access information and social media, GPS on phones for using as discrete tracker devices and weighing scales with a programme for assisting in weight management. The use of a Wii App to improve fine motor movements and monitor the effectiveness of medication in managing client conditions was also demonstrated. This allowed everyone the opportunity to understand exactly how the technologies worked and how these might be used to help people in their own home.
“The presentation gave staff a unique opportunity to understand exactly how assistive technology worked and to consider how this can be applied in the promotion of self-care and safety for service users and carers”.
Day Care reablement programmes and the use of assistive technologies are some of the tools available to older people to promote independence within their own homes as part of Transforming Your Care.