As a CASA partner, Scotland identified that one of its main strengths lies in the Scottish Government’s strong strategic commitment to progress the development of technology enabled health and care services.
This commitment was first evidenced in 2006 when the Government funded a five-year national Telecare Development Programme to support health and care partnerships to develop telecare services locally. Also in 2006, it set up the Scottish Centre for Telehealth to provide advice and support to Scottish Health Boards to develop telehealth services.
Over the last 7 years, telehealth and telecare developments have been aligned with key national strategic initiatives, including health and social care integration, reshaping care for older people and the national ehealth / digital agendas.
The merged Scottish Centre for Telehealth and Telecare led the development of the first National Delivery Plan for Telehealth and Telecare, published in 2013. The Plan outlines how health and care partnerships can support the ongoing development of technology enabled integrated care in Scotland.
A deliberate move away from multiple small projects to at-scale implementation programmes has helped to raise awareness of the potential role of assistive technologies in the redesign of services, providing strong business cases for change at both national and local levels. These at-scale programmes include national video conferencing infrastructure for telehealth, stroke services, mental health and the Technology Strategy Board funded dallas project, Living it Up.
Scotland is involved in a number of European initiatives, including the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP on AHA), SmartCare, United4Health, ACT and CASA. In July 2013, Scotland was awarded Reference Site status, receiving a 3 star rating for two of its good practice submissions. We are keen to share our experiences and to learn from our partners to maximize the growth and impact of at scale, assisted living solutions in Scotland.