English Churches Housing Group is upgrading its infrastructure to make it compliant with BT’s new 21CN digital network, ensuring that ECHG’s telecare and monitoring systems continue to support its elderly residents.
ECHG is installing Tunstall’s telecare system, Communicall Connect, at a number of its sheltered housing schemes across the country. On-site managers and other staff have a network of radio receivers giving full-site coverage, a management terminal and a site-wide paging system, which immediately alerts them to the source and nature of an alert so that helped can be given to tenants. Tunstall’s system provides round-the-clock support for tenants, with the option of including telecare sensors on an individual basis to support changing health and social care requirements.
21CN is BT’s new digital network which is being rolled out across the whole of the UK. The significance of the upgrade is because 21CN can affect the transmission of tone-based protocols between social alarms and monitoring centres so that without Tunstall’s upgrades, this could result in an alarm activation not raising an alert, posing a serious risk to ECHG’s tenants.
Judith Crowther, director of older people’s services, ECHG, said, “We are committed to providing a service which encourages individuals to remain in their own homes for as long as possible and to enjoy independence and a good quality of life. Telecare lets tenants do just that, keeping them safe, giving them their privacy and also the reassurance that help is at hand when required.”
ECHG, which is part of the Riverside Group and supports over 6000 tenants, expects to make annual savings of £220,000 in monitoring and maintenance as a result of the new communication system. The cost savings will be re-invested by ECHG to improve housing and services for its residents.