The aim of the KAT project in 2016 was to complete a preliminary study on the current situation, which describes how the safety of living at home appears in support of Eksote and the South Karelian Rescue Department’s general view, targeting of operations and development of operations, so that appropriate decisions can be implemented in interest of our elderly people in South Karelia. The emphasis of the project was to focus on entities focusing on prevention in the safety view of living at home, to which operations should be targeted.
The preliminary study involved completed surveys, 48 home visits, interviews, a seminar, testing and the forecasts of collected materials as well as the method of carrying out the preliminary study. The members of the KAT project’s steering group were Eksote: Development Director, Director of Care, Operating Unit's Supervisor, Environment and Safety Manager, Quality and Patient Safety Manager and a lawyer. South Karelia's Rescue Department: Chief Executive Officer of Regional Rescue Services and Risk Management Manager. Lappeenranta University of Technology: Research Lecturer. Saimaa University of Applied Sciences: Research Manager.
Background mapping was carried out in 2015 together with Eksote and South Karelia’s Rescue Department. The obtained results were utilised as preliminary data in 2016. The first contacts and meetings were organised among organisations in relation to the theme already during 2014. During the preliminary study of the project, 48 home visits were carried out in the spring of 2016 as a method of increasing overall understanding, which observed the current approaches and methods of organisations (Eksote and EKPela) and rectified the resident’s situation of home and personal safety both proactively and from a rectifying perspective. The main emphasis of operations has been, in accordance with the rescue department’s IV risk zone classification, in Lappeenranta and Rautjärvi.
The project has been reviewed through three scenarios: accidents, fires and interruptions to electricity distribution. Three scenarios have been raised as entities, for which issues should be considered from a proactive emphasis point of view, to avoid either individual situations that lead to reduced capacity, personal damages in building fires as well as to obtain operational reliability, operating models and cooperation of the network to residents’ homes in case of any prolonged interruption events, for example, in case of long-term interruptions of electricity distribution. These three themes have been selected because they can be used to review issues overall as well as at an individual, communal and social level from the management of an individual accident to coping and recovering from interruption events.
From South Karelia’s Rescue Department’s perspective, a significant change has taken place in targeting risk-based activities in the provincial area. Previously, people with weaker capacity have been in an institutional environment were legislation and obligations have been part of overall safety. In the current situation, elderly people with reduced capacities live in their own homes all around the province, sometimes very far away from the scope of various services and the overview of the situation is not clear. A large number of elderly people live in an area to which it can take a long time for rescue services to arrive in accordance with the rescue department’s IV risk zone classification.
To understand the scenarios and obtain information, the operations managers of Lappeenrannan Energia Oy, Parikkalan Valo Oy and Imatran Seudun Sähkö Oy have been met. The larger picture of living at home from a safety perspective was observed with them in relation to the importance of receiving electricity from the framework of a sparsely populated area. The energy companies produced interruption statistics for the past five years in the sparsely populated areas of Lappeenranta and Rautjärvi using the risk class definition of South Karelia’s Rescue Department. An illustrative drawing was created on the basis of the statistics, about how the interruption statistics of Lappeenranta’s electricity distribution in 2015 can be utilised. The analysis of material related to electricity is extremely multidimensional, and in order to initiate more in-depth and more analytical processing, more resources must be allocated to it. One of the findings of the preliminary study was that this entity must be further processed and included in support of the planning of the overall picture, so that smaller and longer-term interruptions of electricity distribution can be minimised from the resident's perspective from the emphasis of risk implementation. This must also be associated with a model on how predictive data, such as warnings produced by weather forecasts are considered from the perspective of preparation in relation to the activities of the operator network and the resident’s coping in his/her own home.
Data for the illustrative drawing of fires’ forecast model were obtained from South Karelia’s Rescue Department's Pronto system for a period of five years with pre-assigned factors, which included the assessed main cause of the fire, assessed reason of the fire, fire deaths according to primary data per age group, fire deaths according to gender and age groups, fire deaths per rooms, building fires and risks of fire in terms of time, fires’ starting locations, the fire-starting apartment’s type according to time and the type of accident according to time.
The accident data was collected via Eksote’s pricelist, what is the estimated daily price accumulated by an elderly person’s smoke exposure or an elderly person falling over at home. Eksote’s staff was interviewed to ensure the collection of data. During the project, there have also been discussions with Eksote’s patient safety manager about the importance of Haipro (threat and danger situation) reports. In the future, Eksote shall invest in improving the deviation report procedure, because making the overall reporting practice of deviations positive will improve both the everyday life of individual employees as well as the organisation's risk management and learning from situations. When issues are worked on together as a work community or organisation, prediction readiness is improved and the situation of each individual resident can be improved significantly. The overview helps at different levels to plan and target operations as well as to raise expertise needs in cooperation with the network by keeping the resident in the centre focus and by targeting activities for the resident.
For example, how can Eksote’s home care be aware in February about customers that are at high risk due to not having an electricity supply to their apartments during freezing conditions. How can home care and others reach the resident, if e.g. a storm has caused an interruption event in the area? What dependencies does the resident have in relation to electricity and what consequential effects does it cause over a two-day period for the resident coping at home during harsh freezing conditions? What effects do power cuts have on, for example, the operational reliability of electrical locks during a two-hour period? What battery lives do health technology devices have?
How can we proactively eliminate risks in residents’ homes from the perspective of the risk of fire, if we know in advance that fires occur in kitchens and saunas? How do elderly people and their capacity effect the starts of fires or fire extinguishing, either due to humane capacity or the non-understanding to react to issues? How can exiting the apartment be ensured or how can a resident gain extra time to exit in case of a fire? What is the operator network's common understanding on what would be critical sites to provide help quickly to? Are our operations guided by managing or preventing an interruption situation? When an elderly person falls over at home, we can make an estimated calculation on what costs will be incurred during the first 24 hours.
Overall justification would be that e.g. home care and the assessment of service needs would be trained in regard to how to operate in such interruption situations. The aim would be to increase understanding, expertise and cooperation. It would also be important to consider what importance information and the flow of information has on e.g. the targeting of resources and the production of activities. The result would be that a common understanding would be formed on what the case of the situation is and what issues should be developed and improved. In addition, if the overall entity would be managed and carried out in this way, it would be most affordable if costs are considered in an overall manner. On this basis, for example operating cards to provide guidelines for situations could be created for the support of employees.
Eksote, Project Manager Kristiina Kapulainen, firstname.lastname@example.org, tel 040 651 1791