Launch of BetterCareGuide “Review by Phone” set to change the care data marketplace

New service allows care users to review providers by phone, collecting data which can help other care users make informed decisions about care
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Uckfield - East Sussex - England


April 23, 2012 - PRLog -- London, 23rd April 2012 - ReallyCare CIC, the not-for-profit behind BetterCareGuide, a crowdsourced platform for data on adult social care providers (residential and home care) has launched its new “Review by Phone” service today, enabling service users and their relatives to quickly and simply provide data on care service provision without needing access to the internet or even a computer.

The size of the adult social care market for personal services in England alone (the site covers all of the UK) was £17bn in 2010-2011 (NHS Information Centre) and is set to increase as the population ages.  Tonight’s Panorama shows that adequate information to choose between providers is not currently available.

The care sector has waited for a mechanism that can radically improve the way in which review data is captured. With data transparency becoming so salient, BetterCareGuide “Review by Phone” is a new proposition that will radically shake up the care market.

Service users or their relatives can provide information about a service provider by dialing 020 3322 2611 from a landline and answering the prompts.  This data means that prospective service users (and their relatives) will be better able to identify the right agency to provide care for them.

BetterCareGuide provides prospective service users with many advantages, including:
Quick and easy access to regulator data across the UK
Access to crowd-sourced data (like “Trip Advisor”)
Access to data added by providers (the site is free for providers, who automatically get notified when their sites get reviewed)
An accessible, simple design that works on mobiles and laptops as well as desktop PCs

BetterCareGuide is focused on helping prospective service users build relationships with care providers through straightforward access to quality-of-service data. BetterCareGuide has already seen market validation that has exceeded expectations and met with many favourable comments from providers and provider bodies.

Care homes and agencies that partner with BetterCareGuide will stand out to current and prospective clients, pioneering and using a real-time format. Clients will gain more information about a service provider at an early stage, and will be able to make decisions more quickly. The additional clarity and information presented will reduce the need for outside research, saving time and money.

Mark Chapman, founder of ReallyCare CIC commented:
“The way we collect and access data on care providers is desperately in need of reinvention, and we think this move will vastly increase the amount of available data, which will be good for everyone.”  Mark, who this weekend won a major prize at the annual National Hack the Government event where developers compete to make the best use of open government data, went on to say “ReallyCare CIC is committed to openness and transparency and we will ensure that the data that we collect will be made available in future systems to improve the efficiency and quality of care delivery in the UK”


Contact Information:

Mark Chapman
01825 830420 / 07807 170856

Further Information:

Mark Chapman (director of ReallyCare CIC) won UK Location prize (from Defra) of £500 at the 2012 National Hack the Government event held at Government Digital Services on Saturday.  The event is a one day hack, with about 7 hours to develop something.  His solution (now at made use of Met Office data made available last week to help occasional cycle commuters plan their journeys into work so they weren’t always battling a head wind.

Last week (18th April) a National Audit Office report about open data “Implementing Transparency” specifically said that open social care data is required:

8a With respect to information supporting individual choice, in education the department collects and reports appropriate information to support parents in choosing schools. In social care, by contrast, neither the Department of Health nor its funded bodies collect and publish appropriate information on the comparative costs and performance of providers of community based care services for adults.  This data could help to support users in choosing how to spend personalised budgets. While much of the data in this sector is held by private providers, the Government’s Open Public Services 2012 White Paper commits to publishing “key data about public services, user satisfaction and the performance of all providers from all sectors”.

Panorama tonight will show how regulators (in this case the CQC) are not able to keep abreast of changing conditions within provider organisations.  This BBC News item mentions “80-year-old woman being slapped by a care worker” in Ash Court Care Home, London. Prior to the assault, the CQC had rated the home as "excellent" .
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Tags:Care, Residential Care, Domiciliary Care, Home Health, Homecare
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