HSC Technology Group in The Source SATURDAY

Insights

HSC Technology Group’s CEO Graham Russell featured in The Source Saturday discussing how technology will play a key role in helping the aged care sector evolve, and enabling providers to stay competitive and retain their residents.

Read the full article below published by The Source Saturday last 6th August 2022.

Contact HSC Technology Group today on 1300 889 838 to see how smart sensor technology can help your business.

Tech the ageing enabler

By Lauren Broomham

Technology will play a key role in helping providers retain their customers throughout the ageing journey and stay competitive as new retirement housing options emerge.

With residential developers increasingly looking to technology to target older downsizers, the use of sensor and other smart technology should be standard across retirement living and aged care, according to Graham Russell, the CEO of the ASX-listed HSC Technology Group.

HSC was founded in 2012 with the aim of helping aged care businesses improve outcomes for their residents and their occupancy.

A study that the group conducted in partnership with the CSIRO found 60% of older people left their homes because their children forced them to make the choice, 30% after a fall and 10% due to safety concerns such as leaving a stove on.

“We wanted to work on the first problem by providing the children with visibility of their parents’ activities of daily living, so they had comfort that mum or dad was all right living by themselves,” said Graham.

Today, HSC has over 13,000 clients across the residential care and home care space using its Talius Smart Care Platform of remote sensors to monitor their customers and provide real-time reporting to carers and families.

“You think about restaurants, retail stores, service stations, agriculture – they all use sensors to gather information about what is happening in their business,” said Graham.

“In residential care, the only piece of data that they currently rely on is the nurse call button and in home care they don’t have any visibility at all around the clients’ needs or requirements.” 

Technology key to retaining ageing customers.

Looking ahead, however, Graham says that adopting technology solutions will be key not only to attracting staff and meeting compliance requirements, but also ensuring that customers stay with providers for longer.

“New retirement communities will be about having a platform in place that allows that person to age in place as long as possible, and sell a perception of care and visibility,” said Graham.

He points out that falls are Australia’s largest contributor to hospitalised injuries and a leading cause of injury deaths and says this is why assistive
technology is so important in communities to empower providers to deliver care.

If that individual is a resident living in a retirement village – and is forced to move into residential care as a result – they lose their independence – and the operator loses their customer.

But this problem can be solved easily – and inexpensively – with sensor technology, says Graham.

“We have designed our technology in a way that it is one hub that simply plugs into a power point or operates using Wi-Fi. Our base kit starts from $390 and once the hub is in place, you can take it all the way through to full data analytics and predictive care.”

“This is the real next generation.”

Improving communication – and making the village manager’s job easier

Their platform is so simple that many of their clients opt to install it themselves and brand it as part of their assisted technology.

Retirement village operators – which make up about 50% of their client base – typically utilise HSC’s range of emergency response systems – which includes a voice-activated alert that enables residents to simply call out for help without wearing a pendant.

The technology is also proving to be an important communication tool with residents.

“We have a IPTV solution for older people that is aimed at providing a social isolation and telehealth solution and a communication pathway for the village as well as apps that can connect residents with their families and GP,” said Graham.

“This can help to minimise the time spent by village managers printing out information and delivering it to residents and improve residents’ relationships with the village and the community.”

Operators need to be willing to adapt and change

But with retirement living increasingly offering home care and higher-level aged care services, Graham sees that operators will need to be flexible and willing to build in further technology solutions as their residents age.

“Our technology is a journey product. Customers may begin by using the emergency response, but then need some extra safety measures installed to support them at home.”

The other important element for operators to consider is that the adult children – not the care recipient or village resident – are the real client.

“My research and feedback is that 80% of the time, the decision-maker is the children.”

He uses the example of an operator with a retirement village resident who left her gas stove turned on.

“The family wanted to move her into residential care, but the operator offered to install a gas sensor via the Talius system. So, if she left the stove on again, it would then beep to remind her to turn it off, and if she didn’t, it would trigger an emergency response. That gave the children comfort
to keep her living at home for another nine months.”

“There will come a time when residents may need to move – but what we want to do is enable them to live independently as long as possible.”