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Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm Requirements: Update

The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (Amendment) Regulations 2022 laid in draft before Parliament has now been debated and approved by the House of Commons and the House of Lords. The regulations will now come into force 1 October 2022.

These new regulations will lead to renewed smoke and carbon monoxide alarm requirements as follows:

  • Social landlords will be required to provide a smoke alarm on every storey of their properties where there is a room used wholly or partly as living accommodation.
  • Both social and private landlords will be required to provide carbon monoxide alarms in any room of their properties used wholly or partly as living accommodation where a fixed combustion appliance is present (excluding gas cookers).
  • There will be a new obligation on all landlords to repair or replace any alarm which is found to be faulty during the period of a tenancy, and landlords will be required to repair or replace alarms as soon as reasonably practicable.

~ Eddie Hughes MP, Minister for Rough Sleeping and Housing.

So, what does this mean for you?

The regulations will help to improve safety in social housing dwellings and ensure that residents have increased protection from the dangers of fire and carbon monoxide poisoning.

If you haven’t fitted alarms across your portfolio of properties already, it is important to think about installing them now. Equally, repairing or replacing faulty alarms will need to be a priority should the regulations come into force.

We understand that the forthcoming regulation amendment may leave you with questions about implementation and unsure how to manage the change whilst remaining compliant.

As one of our valued members, you can rest assured that you have complete access to our fully compliant solutions, including our comprehensive TECS framework, which offers smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

We are happy to talk to you about the solutions we offer that support you in achieving compliance, and to walk through concerns or worries around next steps.

Your account executive is your first port of call if you are thinking about undertaking any solutions to facilitate compliance. You may also contact our Business Development team via email to: solutions@consortiumprocurement.org.uk.

Whatever you choose, you can be confident that our Public Contract Regulations (PCR) 2015 compliant solutions will help improve homes, buildings and estates today and in the future.

Embracing technology enabled care services

Technology Enabled Care (TEC) takes a holistic approach to technology and care services, reframing how the care sector use technology to improve people’s quality of life and support. The strategy primarily emerged from the National Information Board’s Framework for Action policy paper Personalised Health and Care 2020. But why should social housing providers take note?

There are over 1.7 million people receiving technology enabled care across the UK. However, recent research and studies have found that the demand for supporting older and vulnerable people with complex needs is increasing dramatically. The impact of the rise in demand will be an increased strain on an already stretched health and social care system.

On the one hand, technology enabled care practices offer incredible advantages for practitioners and end-users alike. Through technology enabled care services, social housing managers gain opportunities to offer residents real-time support and continuous care through remote assistance. Hardware like fall detectors, monitors and two-way communication systems open the door to ensure residents are safe, and care staff can deliver support with greater resource efficiencies. End users can self-report their status, they can manage long term illnesses, and better rely on receiving aid should they have an accident or fall. Care staff can be directed and reallocated in new ways, ensuring agile and effective assistance. Technology enabled care services also mean support can be given to residents in rural locations and can enable a wider time span for service delivery.

Conversely, the modernisation of existing care equipment can add further challenges. We need to carry out audits and understand how new equipment integrates with (or supersedes) existing hardware. We need to get the right products installed before the analogue switch off in 2025; and we must meet government standards. Lastly, we want to continue to look after residents throughout the switchover process.

By working with technology enabled care service providers who deliver specifically within the sector, social housing organisations can harness the latest technologies and methods to improve outcomes for everyone involved in a way that de-risks, is compliant, and suited to the organisation’s existing care design.

Statistics from the TSA:

  • 1.7 million vulnerable people rely on telecare in the UK and
  • 3 million wrist-worn health and fitness wearable devices were sold in the UK in 2015
  • “By 2025 all UK analogue services will be switched off” meaning many people could lose support if telecare providers haven’t successfully made the change to digital.

Our current technology enabled care services framework runs until December 2023 and can be used by members of the Northern Housing Consortium (NHC). The technology enabled care services framework can help Housing Associations, and Local Authorities that have telecare assisted properties, as well as NHS Trusts, education organisations and blue light services.

Consortium Procurement’s Technology Enabled Care Services Procurement Manager Drew Frame said,

“We want to make sure our members access all the tools they need to support their residents, and our technology enabled care services framework provides a tested, trusted and compliant way to do that. With industry-leading suppliers, we are continuously improving our offering to continue to support our 400 members by offering a compliant solution. We know our technology enabled care services framework has already helped our members to monitor safety, prevent accidents and facilitate independent living and we have had a wide take-up of the solution, as well as positive feedback.

We feel proud as an organisation to work with leading telecare figures like the TSA and infrastructure organisations such as Openreach to deliver innovative services to our members that could improve residents’ lives.”

Members of the NHC can access our framework by contacting solutions@consortiumprocurement.org.uk

We will put you into contact with your dedicated account executive who will provide you all the information required to access the framework, via a number of compliant routes to market. We have 4 Lots on the framework covering TECS Product, Maintenance, Call Monitoring and Warden Call services, and Consultancy. There are options to award via further competition on all lots and ranked or direct awards on some Lots dependant on requirements.

TECS Webinar News Update

Meet TECS Industry Experts and Ease Your Transition to Digital

Our TECS Supplier Showcase is an online event that gives our members the opportunity to learn about the latest care technologies and how they can be used to improve their operations.

The showcase will focus on the switch to digital, with presentations from leading industry experts. Attendees will hear from representatives from the TSA, Openreach, Appello, Careium, Chiptech, Legrand and Tunstall on the importance of digital transformation and how to navigate it.

What can you expect to learn about on the day at our TECS Supplier Showcase?

Speaker presentations:

Appello – With over 25,000 digital customers, learn from our experience of how to move to digital and the considerations that housing providers need to make to create a seamless journey. We’ll also be looking at how to ensure the procurement process that meets your long-term aspirations and key stakeholder engagement in the project.

Careium – Learn how Careium digital products support and enable UK telecare providers to achieve their analogue to digital transition.

Chiptech – We’ll be looking at connectivity resilience in the new digital world, and how product can support individualised care.

Legrand – Designing, optimising & executing your personal digital journey.

Tunstall – Preparing for digital transition: how Tunstall can help.

The Zoom webinar will take place on Tuesday 14th June 2022 from 11 am-1 pm.

Introducing John Austin from Contego Environmental Services Ltd

John has over 37 years industry experience of advising, selling, mobilising, servicing and managing major National and Regional Pest Risk Management services to a wide range of public sector and commercial clients. John moved to Contego in November2020 and helps major Regional & National clients benefit from Contego’s unique & highly effective approach to reduce their pest risk to the minimum.

John says “Our difference is our root cause analysis approach combined with high levels of first-time fix that gives our clients the lowest pest risk profiles they have ever had. Our approach leads to significant environmental impact improvements, by reducing reliance on toxic materials to control pests, and by reducing unnecessary repeat visits and callouts this has helped towards us achieving carbon neutral status”.

Therefore, we invite you to join our Pest Control Webinar on 8th June from 10.00 – 11.30 via Zoom. Join the webinar to hear from our expert speaker, John Austin of Contego Response, the leading experts in pest and bird control in the UK, to identify common problems and share solutions to help you fix your pest problems!

Click here to register

April procurement roundtable speaker

Get Professional Procurement Knowledge This Month at Our Roundtable

Profile pic Kirsty Templeton BiP SolutionsIn this month’s procurement roundtable, Tuesday 26th April, we look at pest control, contract management and green paper updates, the Ukraine/Russia conflict and supply market updates. Discover how these issues may affect you and talk to our guest speakers from Contego and BiP Solutions. Hear new ideas and ways to resolve ongoing issues. Register now to ensure you don’t miss out – it’s free to attend!

Introducing Kirsty Templeton from BiP Solutions
Kirsty will be taking us through Delta contract management in the online sessions, giving us the perfect overview to support and ease the administrative burden of managing various contracts on a daily basis.

Kirsty Templeton joined the BiP Solutions group in 2019 as a Delta eSourcing / Supply Chain Business Development Manager.

With over 10 years’ experience in Commercial and Public Sector sales and account management Kirsty has a long track record of building strong partnerships with both key clients and suppliers and taking new SaaS commercial and procurement products and services to market. Kirsty is a great problem solver, analyst, and team player, always ready to step forward and take the lead and can be found getting involved and supporting the BiP charity events.

John Austin is Business Development Manager at Contego and will give an overview to our members about how they can best manage their pest risks, a popular topic that we’re sure many of you will be excited to learn more about.

Our exclusive member only roundtable events are designed specially to support our procurement professionals. To book your place now, please register via the link below.

bit.ly/3avCkfQ

Tenants Contents Insurance launches in April image

Tenants Contents Insurance launches in April

TCI image banner

We are delighted to announce that the new Tenants Contents Insurance framework will go live on the 1st April offering you the opportunity to procure contents insurance for your tenants.

Royal Sun Alliance PLC have been appointed to our refreshed Simple Tenants Contents Insurance framework, developed in partnership with Marsh Limited. This framework is fully PCR compliant and offers public sector bodies an easy access route to market.

There is no excess and no security requirements and your tenants will have flexible payment options. Marsh can offer access to marketing literature and fund all your marketing activities to help promote the availability of insurance to tenants who may not be able to access home insurance elsewhere.

If you would like further information on this Framework Agreement please contact us.

Tunstall Healthcare launches new Sound Boost telecare service

Tunstall Healthcare launches new Sound Boost telecare device

 

Tunstall Wireless Sound Boost Speaker.

UK based, leading global provider of software solutions, services and technology for the telecare and telehealth markets, Tunstall Healthcare, has further expanded its product portfolio with the launch of Sound Boost.

The revolutionary new product extends the audio range of Tunstall’s Lifeline home alarm units, which are installed in the property of vulnerable individuals to provide 24 hour support. Sound Boost is a telecare device that wirelessly connects to the Lifeline, providing extra audio coverage throughout the home to enable clearer communication between the end user and the monitoring centre.

This reduces the number of No Voice Contact Calls (NVCs), which is when an end user alerts the monitoring centre and the operator can’t communicate as the individual is out of range of the Lifeline hub. This then leads to a responder being required to attend the property.

The clearer communication gives additional reassurance to the user that they can achieve two way contact with the monitoring centre from anywhere in their home. The device also means that responders and emergency services are not called out unnecessarily, enabling them to deliver care where it is needed most.

Sound Boost comprises a remote speaker with an integral microphone that can be installed in any room in the home. It then connects wirelessly to a dongle that is fitted to the Lifeline unit.

Gavin Bashar

Gavin Bashar, UK managing director of Tunstall Healthcare, commented: “When used in combination with a Lifeline unit in areas such as the hall, lounge or bedroom, Sound Boost provides reassurance to service users that they will be heard. It also enables monitoring centres to work more efficiently, and direct their resources to genuine emergencies.”

Stockport Homes’ Carecall service provides 24 hour monitoring and response to more than 4,500 people. However, the service was experiencing a high number of NVC calls, with 86% being false alarms where the user didn’t need assistance.

The centre’s PNC monitoring software identified a cohort of users associated with high levels of NVCs, and compared the number of NVCs for the six week period before and after the introduction of Sound Boost. For the period prior to the introduction of Sound Boost, 47 NVCs were made, but this fell to zero once Sound Boost was deployed. With responder call outs costing on average £40-50, and ambulance call outs much higher, this not only significantly reduces costs, but also reduces disruption to the end user.

Aimee Teare, senior project officer for Preventative Services & TEL at Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council, added: “Sound Boost has been brilliant in enabling us to contact service users if we receive a No Voice Contact call. In all cases of the trial it has reduced the amount of times we have to ring or attend the property after a NVC. It makes our service more efficient and reduces anxiety for the people we support.”

Sound Boost comprises a remote speaker with an integral microphone that can be installed in any room in the home. It then connects wirelessly to a dongle that is fitted to the Lifeline unit.

For more information about Sound Boost, please visit www.tunstall.co.uk/soundboost .

FRC Group

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