Finland provides high-quality care services, but it is difficult to make the quality of work visible. Vantaa took up the challenge and started developing a new platform solution with Sofigate for the needs of service ecosystems.
Several different systems are used in the Finnish health and social services ecosystem for quality control and information management. Data is collected into overlapping systems, and the fragmented whole does not support information management. Vantaa, the fourth most populated city in Finland, is the first to pilot the SofiCare platform solution’s potential for better information management in health and social services.
The aim of the joint pilot was to improve quality control and communication. Quality control needed ways to easily see the bigger picture by unit, for example. In turn, a functional and secure platform was sought for communication. “Among other things, we wanted to make it easier to process feedback. It is important that relatives know how to handle the residents’ business and can rely on their progress,” says Nina Linja, Director of Preparation for The Organisation of Services at the Vantaa and Kerava Welfare Area.
Platform solution makes it easier to manage information
Vantaa was closely involved in exploring the possibilities of the platform solution and developing a new concept. The residents of the care unit and their relatives also took part in the test phase. The experiences were encouraging: the solution was able to collect information for the needs of different user groups and make efforts to utilise it. The pilot showed that the platform solution can facilitate quality control, communication, and knowledge management.
“Quality control seemed to work well, and the reports could be edited according to the needs of the users. The platform was also considered effective in communication. All this will significantly improve the current situation. The personnel has tried new ways of working with enthusiasm,” Linja says.
Creating something new together has inspired both platform solution developers and their users. The motivation and training of personnel will continue to be important. “It is good for staff to see that the system reduces work and frees up time from postings, for example, to customers or to develop their operations. This motivates the use of the platform and helps to achieve its real benefits,” Linja points out.
Massive impacts on society as a whole
There is a great need for better knowledge management in the health and social services sector. The SofiCare platform solution has a lot of potential in Vantaa, and the pilot project has given rise to topics for further development.
For example, the platform could make it easier to calculate the nurse quota set in Finnish law. In Finland, the Act on Services for the Elderly defines minimum requirements for the nursing quota, the fulfillment of which must be verifiable. Calculating the quota is currently a massive manual operation in which data is collected from many locations. “It is a time-consuming task, and calculation errors can also happen. There is an obvious national need for more effective means,” Linja says.
New opportunities keep presenting themselves. For example, the platform could facilitate cooperation between authorities: when data and reports can be submitted in a format, they can be used intelligently. This can also take quality control to a socially new level. If quality control could be made partly public, confidence in the sector as a whole could increase.
A particularly interesting further development goal is related to scaling the system to new service areas. The solution can support knowledge management, especially in services produced in more than one party’s ecosystems. “These include disability, family or mental health services and substance abuse rehabilitation, as well as linking organisational actors to the provision of these services. If the platform solution were to spread to new services and around the country, its impact on society as a whole would be considerable,” says Mirva Sainiemi, SofiCare Concept Owner.