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Chyvarhas nursing home in Callington is the latest Cornwall Care home to introduce an app-based system that is transforming the way carers work by simplifying the record-keeping process and enabling them to look after individuals better.

Known as Nourish, the app is downloaded onto smart phones supplied by the home. Staff log into them when they come on duty and then use them to make note of what is happening with the people they are looking after in real time – rather than laboriously writing up reports often hours later. That helps provide a much more detailed picture of all aspects of a resident’s care, providing valuable information which can also be shared quickly and easily with other members of the team.

Lee Abell has worked at Chyvarhas for ten years in a variety of roles, including as a carer. Currently the home’s caretaker and tech support coordinator, he says the app is making a positive difference to the amount of time staff are able to spend with the people living there.

“It means everything can be instantly recorded so if a resident is having difficulty eating or they dislike certain food, that can be noted straight away and their care plan adapted as necessary,” he explained. “Taking photos with the phone’s camera is very useful too – not just for reporting potential problems like bed sores but also to capture memorable moments like someone getting up and dancing or singing. Times like that are precious and being able to share them with family makes them even more so.

“I use the app when I’m cutting some of our gentlemen’s beards and our housekeeping team often have it to hand when chatting with residents. It’s a tool everyone can use.”

Phones are rigorously cleaned before and after being signed in and out and regular feedback ensures the system is continually being tweaked for maximum effectiveness.

“The team love it because it means spending less time on paperwork and more time caring for our residents,” said Home Manager Beverley Robinson. “It’s a real step forward and one that we’re all delighted with.”

Cornwall Care has sixteen care homes and all are now using Nourish.