Beyond COVID Aged Care Software

Published Mar 15, 2021

The Role of Residential and Community Care Software in the Recovery from COVID-19 Impacts

COVID-19 has sent shockwaves right across society, and there are few sectors that have weathered the storm unscathed. However, some industries and sectors have been hit harder than others. One of the worst affected has been the aged care sector.

At numerous points throughout 2020, it was aged care facilities that were sadly bearing the brunt of COVID-19 cases and deaths. As well as the human tragedy of aged care residents who lost their lives, there were economic hardships that threatened the very future of aged care provision in Australia.

In order to recover successfully and swiftly, aged care providers need specialist support as they offer both facility-based and home-based care on an ongoing basis. This is where an aged care and home care software solution such as Epicor Senior Living Solution (SLS) can play a vital role as Australian – and global – society looks towards recovery from the pandemic.

older man receiving a vaccination

Key Functionalities in Epicor SLS

Resource management

In the recovery phase from COVID-19, care providers will find themselves with scant room to maneuver. If costs grow too high, the level of care will begin to suffer. If relationships with suppliers are not optimised, the long-term future of the provider is put into jeopardy. To put it simply, resource management is going to be a key concern over the coming months and years.

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions with a built-in residential and client management suite of modules, will be right at the heart of this. With an effective ERP, aged care providers gain comprehensive insight into how their organisation utilise resources, allowing them to eliminate waste and inefficiency where this may occur.

These organisations will also achieve agility and flexibility when it comes to supplier relationships. This reduces the cost of organising material deliveries and ensures that the right products and resources are on hand precisely when they are needed. The result is an improved cost profile and a better return on investment for each dollar spent.

Managing vaccination statuses

The roll-out of a coronavirus vaccine has provided a ray of hope at the beginning of 2021. The Australian Government has been busy procuring and approving vaccines for widespread use in the country, with a view to vaccinating all Australians by October 2021. It is hoped that this will accelerate the pandemic recovery.

But October is still many months away. In the meantime, aged care providers need to remain on top of the vaccination statuses of all team members and partners, as well as the clients who are receiving care. This necessitates a robust methodology for recording and assessing vaccinations for everyone involved in the business. If any statuses are recorded in error or any un-vaccinated personnel are allowed to slip through the net, the results could be catastrophic.

Software provides organisations with the capability to record all statuses reliably. This software can be accessed from a remote location, allowing team members to update their vaccination statuses in real time, as well as upload certification to prove that vaccination has been properly carried out. Personnel can also help care recipients to update their information, achieving comprehensive insight and safety across the entire care network.

Remote collaboration

This idea of remote access goes far beyond vaccine management. We cannot expect to immediately return to pre-COVID business models. Social distancing and remote work will continue to play a part even as we enter the recovery phase.

Of course, aged care facilities and home-based care represent a real challenge in this regard. Care provider teams still need to be able to work face to face with patients and care recipients, connecting these individuals with the treatment they need. However, contact between teams still needs to be managed.

Care providers deployed in the field represent only one part of the aged care sector, and organisations will need to be able to minimise unnecessary contact between individuals on other teams. In the event of further lockdowns, service levels must be maintained. Software with mobile solutions makes this possible.

With mobile solutions, teams will be able to collaborate in real time on any projects that do not require face-to-face interaction. This will make it much easier for care providers to keep customers and personnel safe from infection.

Gaining strategic control

Talk of “the new normal” has become so ubiquitous that it has almost entered the realms of cliché. However, this doesn’t mean that it is not a legitimate concern.

Uncertainty is rife in the aged care sector, and many care providers now do not know whether they should seek to protect their organisations from further harm or to target growth and development. Software solutions will help to eliminate this uncertainty. Key functions such as data analytics and forecasting support businesses as they get a handle on their short-term and long-term future.

Many organisations have found that their future strategies have been blown out of the water by COVID-19. Panic, however, is not the answer. The ability of an organisation to be agile, think outside the box and pivot based on the new situation and demands is now essential. The COVID-19 pandemic is now over a year old, and there is a wealth of new data that can be harnessed in order to craft new strategies. Software solutions make it possible for organisations to gather, store and wield this data.

If organisations can create future-focused operational models, they will gradually develop the confidence required to make informed decisions on the future of the organisation. It’s this confidence – gained from the right home care and residential care software infrastructure – that will be key as care providers target positive and meaningful recovery.

Moving Beyond COVID with Aged Care Software

It’s already been a long and difficult process, and there is still a long way to go. Despite this, organisations in the aged care sector can look forward to better days in the near future as long as they are supported by the right software solutions.

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