Four Seasons Health Care has introduced Wi-Fi into its 370 care homes and residents have been taking advantage of the opportunities that internet access provides. They have readily adapted to using the technology to keep in touch more frequently with relatives or friends who live far away.
Violet Amies at The Maltings Care Home in Fakenham said: “Having Wi-Fi in the home means that my daughter and I can sit together and use Skype to talk to my other daughter who lives in the United States, which is much easier than trying to arrange a telephone call. It’s great to be able to hear her news more regularly and to be able to see each other and share photos online.”
At Cossins House Care Home in Cobham, a resident who used to be a ballet dancer and is now living with dementia, regularly watches ballet videos online. This helps to stimulate positive memories, as well as encouraging her to reminisce about her earlier experiences with other residents and staff members. Many residents are also shopping for books and other small items online in addition to adding to their Kindle libraries.
Alistair How, Chief Operating Officer of Four Seasons, the UK’s leading care homes operator, said: “It has been a significant investment to upgrade our IT systems and install Wi-Fi in all of our care homes, but it is one that we consider to be very worthwhile. It has enhanced our residents’ enjoyment of life in their home. They are able to connect more frequently via social media services and email and they can also keep up to date with their personal interests more readily, as well as maintaining their independence by shopping online.”