Insights

Mark Raeburn: 5 minute read

Connecting the UK through the power of ECLIPSE

The coronavirus pandemic has shown to the world that technology is of paramount importance. It has helped to maintain connections, keeping loved ones connected when they have been unable to physically see each other. It has kick-started a technology revolution that will continue to change the world for years to come.

In terms of health and social care, it has highlighted those who are vulnerable, connecting them to help and assistance quicker. Without technology and the means in which to make connections as rapidly as we have, the damage would have been a lot worse.

The importance of technology

We believe in the power of technology as an enabler. The human race has developed more in the last twenty years than in the hundred previous. This is mainly through the technical arms race. Each year we see faster, and more advanced solutions emerge, each of which reduces the time in which it takes us to complete a task. We now live in a world in which aeroplanes are mainly flown by computer. They are so advanced that they operate the safest mode of transport in the world.

We have the internet. The single greatest breakthrough in terms of connectivity and globalisation. New brands can reach a huge audience across the world in a matter of clicks. The internet has empowered us all to be content creators and entrepreneurs. It has given a voice to the voiceless and provided access to 24/7 working patterns.

This has been of great relevance to health and social care organisations. Now providers have a raft of talent available across the world. Medical information can be shared and searches for cures can continue 24 hours-a-day, 365 days a year. For health and social care it has enabled the sharing of ideas and stories in a way never before thought of.

Taking this connectivity locally, health and social care organisations can access data from anywhere, at any time. This ensures that breakthroughs are shared in a timely manner and referrals dealt with in an expedient manner where possible.

Covid-19

We have all seen the life-altering effects that Covid-19 has brought along with it. It has taken the human race and jump-started the move towards technology adoption through having no other choice. Before the arrival of the pandemic industries such as health and social care, in the United Kingdom, were moving slowly towards technological adoption. There were still many legacies still in the system such as fax machines in the NHS.

With the arrival of Covid-19, the industry had no choice. They needed to adapt to stay true to their core function. To care for those who are vulnerable, whilst they are at home and not encouraged to visit the hospital, technical adoption was required. Apps that linked social care and the NHS to the army of volunteers, who pledged their time when asked were essential.

Volunteers simply log on, list themselves as active and assignments are passed out. This ease of use showcased the best parts of society, the caring nature of those who volunteered and the inventiveness of app designers. By fusing enthusiasm with care and inventiveness, frontline services were able to continue caring for those who were most vulnerable.

The current pandemic has kick-started a technical revolution in the NHS. This was planned by the government but given the juice, it needed to get ahead by the current pandemic. Digital revolution is here to stay, in order to ensure that those who are vulnerable receive the assistance that they require when they require it.

ECLIPSE Software and Services Platform

We envisioned ECLIPSE years ago to be future proof. We wanted to create something that would evolve with health and social care organisations. We didn’t want to leave the industry with something that when needed, would let them down. We didn’t envision a pandemic, no-one did, but when it hit, we knew what our role was.

As our Chief Executive, Peter O’Hara wrote to our customer user community at the start of the pandemic,

“I wanted to reassure you that OLM is 100% focused on ensuring we deliver an uninterrupted support service during this unprecedented period.”

Our role was and still is to keep the lights on and continue to improve people’s lives. To keep the servers running and continue pushing forward with development. This is what we have done. Our promise to our customers has always been to make life easier and that was more important than ever during this time. To be responsible for sending out a product that would not fit around the lives of those using them would be inefficient. It would be something that we would not put our names to. We designed ECLIPSE as a Cloud Native product and through the current pandemic, it has proved to be fit for purpose.

Speaking with customers to ensure that everything was running as it should, we came across comments such as,

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, the reliability and performance of our social care solutions has been more important than ever. ECLIPSE has continued its high performance and has been a constant with 24/7 access for staff, all of whom have had to work remotely since the start of the lockdown.”

ECLIPSE has enabled clients to be able to continue with business as usual. This was always our goal with the creation of the platform, and we are proud to see the real difference that it has made during these troubled times.  

“…using OLM's hosting we have been able to focus our efforts on the Covid response, rather than maintaining the performance of the system.”

The future

The future is an undiscovered country. It is in the distance, but the picture is not clear. We have moved past the outbreak and now we are in the process of seeing how we can live with the beast that is Covid-19. It has irrevocably altered the way in which we operate, in terms of our daily lives. It is a virus-like no other and the sooner that we find a cure, the better.

Until then we will continue to think of others and stay safe. Technology is a key way in which we can do this. It is a friend in dark times that can light up the room and show us our loved ones. We are living in the era of the Cloud and when designed around the Cloud, solutions such as our ECLIPSE platform can make a difference.

The future is primarily focused on the Cloud and in the background it is Brexit. This life-altering vote has been ratified and with no agreement signed, will impact the United Kingdom. We could end up in a situation in which we are out of the frying pan and into the fire. This is something that we hope will not happen and the government will consider those on the ground. We cannot affect this, but we can ensure that the lights remain on and light up the route ahead for those in health and social care.

Conclusion

Social care has had a history of being unsure and concerned about technology. When you ask people who are using services from social care what has had the biggest positive impact in their lives, it is technology. A great example of this is, Amazon Alexa, which provides information and video messaging that connects grandparents to their family. This has a hugely positive impact on people’s lives. It is time for the sector to focus on the people and think of technology as an enabler to support better lives.

The United Kingdom would be in a far worse state than it is without the advent of digital infrastructure. This has helped to keep us all connected. In a time where panic has run rife, technology has helped us all to take a breath. We feel safe in the knowledge that we can reach loved ones at the click of a button to see their faces.

Health and social care organisations have been able to push forward with technological advances. They have been able to stay connected with those who are vulnerable. They have been able to contact patients at home and align volunteers with those who need assistance. The Cloud has created new connections quickly to ensure that panic reduced and new normals created.

We are proud as an organisation to have worked with health and social care organisations to keep the lights on. This has been a core focus and we have done just that. Our technology has shone through and ensured that professionals have been able to do their jobs. This sounds like a simple consideration but in practice, many solutions have fallen over, costing time and money. At times like this, it is unacceptable.