Bedale-based Castle Home Care Services has become the first home-based care business in the UK to provide a leading-edge messaging and video chat service for all its customers.
The new system is called Care Messenger TV, developed by a partnership between a UK communications software firm and global electronics giant LG.
The package includes a state-of-the-art 4K TV with the Care Messenger software built in.
The system allows families to download the Care Messenger app from Apple or Google stores for free and send text, photo, and video messages to their loved ones which pop up over their TV so they can’t miss the messages.
A time stamp is returned to the app, so families know the messages have been seen and read with a simple response.
The system even has an ‘assist’ button on the TV remote which can be customised for individual needs.
The new technology is the first in the world to allow video calls to be made from a mobile app direct to TV without the need for any other hardware and without having to change channels or inputs.
Specially designed for the elderly who often struggle with technology, it is so easy to use and ideal for families to stay in touch with their loved ones from anywhere in the world.
The new system has a manager portal so care staff can also send messages or video call their customers.
Castle’s owner David Bennison said “We are delighted with this new system.
“I was able to see first-hand how our residents react – one lady was so impressed by the life-like quality and ease with which she could chat with her son on her gleaming new TV, she was moved to tears.
“She’d never been able to do this before because she doesn’t have internet and is not comfortable using a tablet or a smart phone.”
Castle’s manager Christine Farmer said: “I was so moved by how this system was transforming the lives of some of our lonely and isolated elderly people that when I saw the emotional reaction of one of our customers, I was in tears myself.
“The Care Messenger manager portal is going to make it so much more efficient and fun to communicate with our customers – it’s great for the staff as well as the elderly residents”.
Castle are planning to expand their business by providing Care Messenger TV to private clients free of charge and offer an additional service of video calls to compliment the actual calls made by their carers.
Bennison states that this exciting technology will put Castle Home Care Services ahead of their competitors by offering a more comprehensive service.
Also, the new TV system will be made available to all home care providers nationwide following this initial launch.
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