Tunstall’s Intelligent Home Unit Drives Innovation

From: Tunstall Group
Published: Fri Jun 24 2005

A pioneering initiative to remind older people when to take vital medication has been developed and launched by a Staffordshire-based team, using Tunstall’s intelligent home unit, Lifeline 4000+, to deliver and manage medication reminders.

People enrolled on the scheme are provided with a Tunstall Lifeline 4000+, which automatically gives an audible and visual alert when it is time to take their medication. If the person does not press a key on the Lifeline unit to acknowledge the reminder within a set time, the Lifeline unit will alert a monitoring centre, so that any necessary follow-up action can be taken.

Authorised carers can ring a user’s Lifeline 4000+, access a voice menu to record a personalised medication reminder message, specifying the time of day when it should be played and whether it should be played once only or repeated daily.

The medicine reminder initiative is a result of collaboration between two housing services, local pharmacists, Social Services and Health, two Primary Care Trusts and Tunstall, the leading provider of personal and home reassurance telecare solutions.

Medication non-compliance – the failure to take drugs on time in the dosages prescribed – is as dangerous and costly as many illnesses. The UK’s Primary Care Trusts spend an estimated 17% of their total budget on medication compliance and up to 10% of hospital admissions are due to people not taking their prescribed drugs.

Over a third of older people take more than four medicines, several times daily and at different times of the day, according to Head of Medicines at South Western Staffordshire PCT, Cathy Riley, "Research has shown that for patients with long term conditions, as many as half of prescribed medicines are not taken as prescribed."

Corporate Director of Social Care and Health, Stuart Brook added: "Professionals from the health sector, social care or housing identify people who may benefit, then a local pharmacist assesses their suitability for the scheme. The pharmacist discusses which medicines they are currently taking, any concerns they may have with taking medicine and then recommends whether or not the electronic reminder service should be installed."

Tunstall’s Lifeline 4000+ is an easy to use, flexible home hub supporting a comprehensive range of telecare services, allowing vulnerable people to live safely and independently. Up to 35 smart sensors are able to detect intruders, inactivity, carbon monoxide, smoke, floods and many more potential crises. A host of additional functions ensure the Lifeline 4000+ provides peace of mind to users and carers. The system works on an EN 300 220-3 class-one receiver, which ensures all calls for assistance are made first time. The range of the unit is typically 50 metres, making it ideal for use in the garden and even the largest of homes. A unique low-battery warning automatically calls the monitoring centre whenever the battery in the personal radio trigger is low.

For further information on this scheme visit:

About Medicines Partnership
Medicines Partnership aims to help patients to get the most out of medicines by involving them as partners in prescribing decisions and ensuring that they have appropriate information and support. It is led by a collaborative Task Force involving nurses, doctors, pharmacists, academics, the NHS, the pharmaceutical industry and, most importantly, patients. Medicines Partnership is a key partner in organising the annual Ask About Medicines Week. For further information visit: www.medicines-partnership.org or www.askaboutmedicines.org.

About Tunstall
Established in 1957, Tunstall is a leading European manufacturer and provider of personal and home reassurance telecare solutions and response centre systems. Tunstall makes independent living possible through the application of technology and the provision of services that protect, support and care for people. Tunstall operates in the UK, mainland Europe, North America and Australasia. For more information, visit www.tunstall.co.uk

Company: Tunstall Group
Contact Name: Luke Ford
Contact Email: tunstall@contextpr.co.uk
Contact Phone: 01625 511966

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