Expert Installer ensures the Service User gets the TECS equipment that will maximise the benefits at an accelerated timeframe.
In early December, an NRS engineer visited a property to complete a new installation of a full Lifeline system with accessories, and the inclusion of a special Epilepsy sensor ordered from Alert-It. The visit was coordinated with both the client’s son (for access) and the prescriber of the equipment, with the client not being at home at the time.
The request was expected to be a relatively straightforward affair, but there were a couple of issues that arose on site that required some introspection.
The first of these problems was that the epilepsy kit that had been ordered specifically for this client was composed of a sensor and a pager. This is a problem as the client lives alone and therefore it is not suitable for him without additional items being requested. The engineer contacted the NRS office and discussed this issue, to which he then advised the prescriber of the limitations of the equipment being a pager system. Both he and the office were then able to advise the prescriber and Lincolnshire County Council (LCC) respectively that for that item to work for the client and with his new Lifeline, he would require a bedside monitor box from the same supplier. Being able to discuss with the client’s son on site, and having knowledge of the supplier’s equipment, we were not only able to quickly identify the problem, but also able to recommend what would be required to make it a viable and useable item.
During the discussions with the client’s son, he advised that his father (as far as he knew) suffered from Absence seizures, and the engineer was again able to discuss a further potential shortcoming of the ordered equipment, with that particular epilepsy setup only being suitable for people who had Tonic-Clonic seizures. Good knowledge of the equipment and what it is intended for again enabled the engineer to advise the Occupational Therapist (OT) on site that this could be a problem. Having the prescriber on site enabled this to be relayed to her immediately, but despite that being the case the engineer still advised the office so that LCC could also be advised straightaway. So that there was no duplication, LCC were advised that the prescriber was aware, but we felt it good practice to ensure that everyone was up to date as soon as possible with all issues relating to the request. As with the requirement for additional items due to the pager, the engineer was able to advise (due to good product knowledge) that the same supplier does have items available that may be suitable and that she should discuss alternatives with them. This could save her unnecessary time looking into items by knowing a company to contact. With this issue, the speed at which the prescriber can be informed also enables them to gather further information from GPs and medical practitioners sooner.
Alongside the Lifeline equipment being ordered, a replacement keysafe was requested which the engineer took with him. It was believed that the keysafe was either broken or the combination was unknown, and therefore could not be opened. Rather than just installing a second keysafe at the property, the engineer opted to “problem solve” the situation first to ensure it was necessary to fit another. This is standard procedure for our Lifeline systems as well, and so in applying the same process to the keysafe the engineer was able to identify that a replacement was not required and the keysafe was not faulty. In the case of this client, a combination had been chosen and all relevant parties were advised as to what it was, but the keysafe had never actually been programmed with the code.
In all, good working practices, following reliable processes, and having up to date training and good product knowledge enable the NRS engineer and the customer service agent to identify limitations in ordered equipment, recommend additional required items, ensure all parties were informed of issues swiftly, and resolve suspected faults without unnecessary replacement. As a testament to the work of the engineer, the OT took the time to compliment him on his presentation (“she thought the driver/engineer was lovely”) and to fixing the keysafe.
Expert engineer and good practice installation
Our engineers are skilled and knowledgeable Technology Enabled Care (TEC) installers, who are able to evaluate, advise on and repair TEC equipment solutions whilst conducting installations. For example, in Lincolnshire one of our TEC engineers visited a Service User’s property to install a full lifeline system and a special Alert-It epilepsy sensor, as requested by the Service User’s Prescriber. On arrival, the engineer quickly identified that the prescribed equipment would not be suitable due to the Service User’s specific needs:
- The prescribed Epilepsy kit comprised a sensor and pager; as the Service User lived alone, this would not be suitable and therefore required additional items to be a viable solution, such as a Bedside Monitor
- A discussion with the client’s son (who was present at the Service User’s home to meet our engineer and discuss his father’s needs) revealed the Service User experienced Absent Seizures; this had further implications for the equipment, as the Epilepsy kit that had been prescribed was suitable for a different form of Epilepsy.
Our engineer fed this back to the NRS TEC team and contacted the prescriber and LCC to explain the limitations of the equipment that had been prescribed. The engineer was able to suggest alternative solutions from the same supplier (Alert-It) based on their own extensive product knowledge and expertise, and further signposted the prescriber to Alert-It to discuss alternatives directly, saving further time and identifying the most suitable solution.
During the same visit, the engineer had been tasked with installing a replacement keysafe; it was believed the existing keysafe was either broken or the combination was unknown, and therefore could not be opened. As is standard practice for NRS TEC installations, the engineer investigated the situation prior to installing the new keysafe. They discovered the original keysafe was not faulty, but had simply never been programmed with the agreed code. The engineer programmed the existing keysafe, fixing the fault without having to install the new keysafe.
This engineer demonstrated best practice by:
- Using their up to date training and product knowledge to assess the Service User’s needs and recommend more suitable equipment
- Communicating with the prescriber so the most suitable solution could be identified for the client, rather than installing inappropriate equipment
- Following reliable processes to resolve suspects faults without unnecessary replacement.
As a testament to the work of the engineer, the prescribing OT took the time to compliment him, praising his ‘lovely’ demeanour and solution for fixing the keysafe.