Providing professional support and advice for Alzheimer’s patients during COVID-19 thanks to DHE Twinning SoCaTel

DHE twinning SoCaTel facilitates better access to long-term care services (LTS) for older adult citizens.

The DigitalHealthEurope (DHE) twinning SoCaTel aims to create and implement a multi-stakeholder co-creation platform, which fosters ageing-in-place in a friendly environment and community. Coordinated by Universitat Rovira i Virgili (Spain) and adopted by ISRAA – Istituto per Servizi di Ricovero e Assistenza agli Anziani (Italy), the SoCaTel platform is an innovative digital tool putting care services in the digital dimension and bringing together families of people with cognitive impairment and professional caregivers. This way, the twinning creates a communication channel encouraging dialogue and exchange of information for better support of the patients with cognitive impairment.

During the SoCaTel twinning implementation, the two partners identified several topics of common interest that could benefit both parties. The final choice fell on the digitalisation of the Alzheimer’s Café.

The flyer list of the Alzheimer Café meetings planned in 2020, of which only the first two have been held.

Originally, Alzheimer’s Café was an offline service whose aim was to offer professional support and advice to patients with cognitive impairment and dementia through face-to-face group meetings. However, the COVID-19 pandemic led to the interruption of the meetings. As both professionals and family caregivers consider constant communication and contact to be extremely important, extending the Café to a digital format has become even more urgent.

The co-creation of the SoCaTel platform has not only provided an opportunity to continue the meetings but also enabled family members and caregivers to bring their suggestions, thus bringing both sides even closer to the real and changing needs stemming from everyday life with patients.

Engaging senior citizens for enhancing citizen participation in the decision-making process on better services in health and care

The successful launch of the twinning made it possible to gather further ideas for creating a digital solution that could be complementary to the original service when the conditions for a relaunch arise. Furthermore, the fact that SoCaTel is an open-source platform that can be adopted, updated and improved opens up new perspectives on “tailored” support to families and their loved ones.

More information about the SoCaTel twinning can be found here.