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Hundreds sign up for Telecare support service

More than 30 people a week are signing up for a service which helps them remain independent for longer.

The City of Wolverhampton Council's Telecare service supports people to live in their own homes by providing a range of assistive technology, from emergency alarms and fall detectors to smoke and flood sensors and automated pill dispensers.

Last year, the council announced plans to give 3,000 additional customers the chance to use Telecare by 2019 - and already over 800 more packages have been installed in residents' homes since April 2016.

Should a Telecare alarm be activated, either by the customer themselves or in response to an incident such as a fall, a message is sent to the council's control centre.

There, trained operators are on hand 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to establish the most appropriate response for the customer, be it contacting a family member, carer, doctor, the new mobile responder service provided by West Midlands Fire Service or the emergency services.

Councillor Sandra Samuels OBE, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Adults, said: "Telecare is playing a vital role in helping people to live more independently and in providing peace of mind and reassurance to Telecare customers, their carers and of course family members, some of whom may live many miles away.

"I am delighted that we are able to help hundreds more people live more independently in their own homes for longer through Telecare, and would encourage anyone who thinks it may benefit a friend or relative to contact us to find out more."

The council has introduced a series of new Telecare packages to meet a range of requirements and budgets. They include:

  • Level 1 (£3 per week): The standard Telecare service comprising of an alarm unit, pendant, keysafe and smoke detector. This universal service is available to people who have two responders who hold a key to their property and agree to respond to an emergency at any time. They could be a family member, neighbour or friend

  • Level 2 (£5 per week): As Level 1, but including access to the mobile responder service provided by West Midlands Fire Service which will visit the Telecare customer's property as required

  • Level 3 (£7 per week): As Level 1, but with a range of additional Telecare detectors and sensors appropriate to the customer's needs. Like Level 1, this service is available to people who have two responders - either a family member, neighbour, carer or friend - who agree to respond to an emergency call as required

  • Level 4 (£9 per week): As level 3, but with access to the mobile responder service provided by West Midlands Fire Service

In addition, Telecare is free to people in receipt of certain benefits and free during a period of reablement support or to prevent a hospital admission.

As well as supporting customers in their own homes, Telecare is also helping to reduce pressure on the ambulance service and local hospitals thanks to new mobile responder service. Telecare trained firefighters have attended more than 1,500 callouts since the service launched last April, and an ambulance was required in just 14% of cases.

Councillor Samuels OBE said: "This means that more people are receiving the help and support they need in the home, rather than having to be taken to hospital by ambulance as was more often the case previously."

To find out more about Telecare, please visit Wolverhampton Telecare Service, call 01902 553585 or email telecare@wolverhampton.gov.uk.

  • released: Tuesday 3 January, 2017