A digital version of an early warning system used in Denmark’s elderly care could prevent hospitalisations, a pilot conducted by five municipalities shows. Switching to an IT solution “strengthens professional skills in elderly care”, reports Denmark’s Agency for Digitisation (Digitaliseringsstyrelsen - DIGST, which funded the pilot.
Early warning is a method used by healthcare professionals to identify health-related changes in elderly citizens. The method aims to prevent development of disease or function loss, by detecting changes early.
The 2016 pilot in nursing homes and home care units in the municipalities of Gentofte, Greve, Silkeborg, Slagelse and Aalborg shows that the digitally supported method prevents hospitalisations, reduces registration time, and strengthens the professional skills of the staff, DIGST writes.
Healthcare professionals record changes in the application, which helps the organisation with discussion and planning. The digital solution facilitates information sharing and strengthens the professional dialogue and improves the early detection workflow.
From the English summary of the evaluation:
“The digital solution contributes to a higher degree of compliance of the method because the method is easier to use when it is digitally supported.”