Use of Electronic Care Records in Homecare Providers
Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) have received an increased number of concerns and queries relating to providers’ use of electronic care records. HCC are aware that many of our contracted providers are choosing to use such systems to support their businesses.
Whilst the Council supports the use of such systems, providers must be mindful that going entirely paperless will not be appropriate for every service user and their family/carer and the provider will need to facilitate access to information where this is required, this may for example be by secure email or in some circumstances through continued use of paper versions of diary records etc in the home of the person you support.
As a minimum the Council expects the following information to be in a service user’s home:
- A Service User Guide
- A care plan so that the service user and/or their legal representative and any visiting professionals are able to see the care support that an individual has
Here are some other things that should be considered when using electronic care records:
- People using a service must be able to access and contribute to their own records in their preferred format, which is in line with the Accessible Information Standard.
- Providers must ensure systems are robust and secure with contingency in place should systems go down.
- Individuals and their family/carers should not be charged to access information for example via an app.
- Providers will need to evidence that they have discussed choices relating to information and documentation with the person they support and their family/carer (where appropriate).
- It is not sufficient to assume individuals are happy with electronic care records because they have not specifically raised a concern or requested alternative options.
- Individuals MUST be made aware of the options open to them and this will be monitored by the Council through reviews and monitoring visits.
- Providers need to be mindful of confidentiality and steps will need to be undertaken to support the individual to decide who can have access to what information.
- Social Care Professionals and Monitoring Officers employed by HCC will require access to information to support statutory reviews and quality assurance processes. Providers therefore will receive requests for data and information, and the must be responded to within 24 hours or sooner where requested.
If you have any queries relating to the use of electronic care records please speak to your Monitoring Officer in the first instance.
Eclipse is a care management solution allowing staff to capture what matters and builds a person centres profile for each client. Assessment and care plans are available on every carers phone so everyone can keep up to date. All this makes it easier to record your clients’ needs consistently and effectively.