Elder care moving to computer

As the last DHB in New Zealand to move from paper to computer to assess elderly people's care needs, Southern District Health Board's introduction of a computer-based system has been successful so far, mental health and community services Otago general manager Elaine Chisnall says.

Since January, assessors had been trained one by one to use the new system's software. It would be another year before the board had fully implemented the system, until which time a mix of paper and the computer system would be used.

Known as InterRai, it was credited recently by Canterbury District Health Board for allowing it to quickly identify the most at-risk elderly to be transferred after the February earthquake.

Mrs Chisnall said the DHB planned to make the data available throughout the primary care sector. This meant the elderly would not need to "tell their story" several times.


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