My Health Guide (now called Hear Me now) is a digital app that enables people with learning disabilities and/or autism to store photos and videos, follow detailed guidance about their daily routines and communicate their needs and desires to others. In a project in the NHS Digital Social Care Pathfinder programme the care provider Hft worked with the technology supplier Maldaba, to roll-out My Health Guide within Hft and in other care providers.
The Institute evaluated the adoption of the app in eleven social care providers and assessed the benefits that were obtained. The results showed that although the app is designed as a tool for an individual to use, its adoption was a sociotechnical change challenge because it depends on changes in the complex health and social care environment that supports people with learning disabilities. In particular, if the app is to be successfully used by people with learning disabilities, the support workers who assist them on a daily basis have to be fully engaged in the adoption process.
In addition to evaluating the adoption process for My Health Guide, the Institute also evaluated the planned benefits and the benefits actually achieved from the use of the app. In addition to the benefits for people with learning disabilities there were potentially significant benefits for other stakeholders including the support workers, families and local healthcare agencies.
As a result of the project we produced a ‘blueprint for the adoption of digital apps in social care’ and a ‘process for establishing and assessing the benefits of digital apps in social care’.
An extended summary of the project is available here together with the blueprint for the adoption of digital apps and the process for assessing the benefits of digital apps: My Health Guide