27 March 2014

Innovation in Specialised Services

Specialised Services have been successful in a bid for monies to purchase 150 tablet computers from the Nursing Technology Fund.

These will be used to enable service users to carry out self-assessments electronically and get instant feedback on their ratings of motivation,  psychological and social well being and level of engagement in treatment.

These self-assessments have been carried out in drug and alcohol services for some years, using paper questionnaires with information being inputted manually or scanned, which was onerous and time consuming.

So, over the last year, AWP's IT team have worked closely with Specialised Services to develop a software system which allows the asessments to be completed  electronically.

This has worked well where teams work from fixed bases and have access to computers. However, on prison wings, in service users' homes and other mobile working sites where computers are not available, paper versions of the questionnaires have still had to be used, with delays in producing results proving demotivating for service users.

As a solution to these problems, the teams went on to develop an application for a tablet, allowing easy completion of the questionnaire and real time feedback using a touch screen  any time - anywhere. The 150 tablets purchased from the Nursing Technology Fund will mean this can be used across specialised services. 

Paul Waites IT Systems manager says: "It has been tremendously rewarding for IT to have  contributed to such an innovative project, which will have so much impact on service  users."

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