University of Hertfordshire leads research to enhance care home residents’ quality of life

The University of Hertfordshire is leading a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) funded four-year study to improve how researchers, health and social care services can use existing data to improve the care and quality of life for care home residents, families and staff.

Over £2.2 million has been awarded for the study – Developing research resources and minimum data set for care homes’ adoption and use – which will address the need to develop robust systems that support how all the different services and individuals (e.g. care staff, NHS professionals, family, regulators, social services) work together for residents’ benefit.

The study will review how current health and social care systems work, what “good” looks like, explore the evidence on how to integrate data and test what a minimum dataset would need to be the key resource for all those working in and for care homes. The findings have the potential to deliver a step-change in how we understand the needs of the care home population.  This could be a resource that supports the provision of high quality care across the country.

Claire Goodman, Professor of Health Care Research, NIHR Senior Investigator at the University of Hertfordshire and the lead investigator commented: “We rely on care homes to provide care and support to some of the most vulnerable members of our society. Care homes are valued partners to the NHS providing almost all our long-term care for frail older people. A more consistent approach is needed to support integrated working and ensure that planning for future needs of residents is based on the best evidence. By bringing together existing data systems, creating a minimum data set and further researching care home residents’ needs, we can make recommendations likely to improve residents’ quality of life.”

Claire Goodman continued: “Long-term continuing care for older people is principally provided by care homes, with approximately 420,000 people in England and Wales living in a care home. Residents and staff rely on the NHS for medical care and the role of social care is gaining recognition as an essential part of care provision for this ageing population. This underlines the need to develop reciprocal systems of working between the NHS and care homes. Our aim is to create new ways of working and doing research in and with care homes, so that the outputs benefit not only the researchers, but also the residents.”

Dr James Pickett, Head of Research at Alzheimer’s Society’s, which is partnering with NIHR on the project, said: “We are delighted to be partners in this important project. The study will tackle a major unmet need and provide a greater understanding of how the care system as a whole can ensure people with dementia in care homes receive the best quality care.”

 “Around 70% of people in care homes are living with dementia, so this study has the potential to change the lives of many thousands of people. There is a data revolution underway in healthcare and it’s vital that social care doesn’t get left behind. We know that dementia devastates lives, which is why projects such as this are so vital.”

The study, which is due to start in November 2019, will bring together 12 other institutions working collaboratively to develop reciprocal systems of working between the NHS and care homes that optimise current provision and research on its effectiveness.

NCF Rising Stars 2019 - Philip Smith from Pilgrims' Friend Society

Philip Smith is Registered Manager of Florence House, run by the Pilgrims’ Friend Society.

Career History

I started my career as a care assistant in a nursing home at the age of 17. I worked my way up to a senior care assistant role and then went onto nights as night supervisor. I then decided I wanted to follow my passion for working with patients nearing the end of their life and went to work for a local hospice as part of their [email protected] team; working in the community with those patients in the last few days of life.

I enjoyed this role for a few years, but then wanted to gain a wider experience within healthcare so I got a job as a community healthcare assistant for the District Nursing Service in Northamptonshire.

Whilst working for the District Nursing Service, I gained new clinical skills and competencies which led me to go to University to do a Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care (Acute and Community). Because of this I received a promotion on the District Nursing Team to an Assistant Practitioner.

After working at this level for a couple of years, I decided it was time for a change and moved to a rural GP surgery as their treatment room nurse. Then I saw my current role advertised; it has always been my dream job, as it utilises my skills and varied experiences.


I currently work as Registered Manager of Florence House in Peterborough, which is a 19-bedded residential care home for residents with general frailty or dementia and needing end of life care. It is part of a wider Christian organisation called Pilgrims Friend Society.
The Pilgrims Friend Society run 15 care homes around the UK, providing environments in which elderly people are looked after, comfortable and secure.

All of their homes are founded on Christian faith and opportunities to continue to be part of a Christian community are a core part of the home that are run by the organisation. This has been important to me in my role and I really enjoy knowing that residents are receiving the best care possible whilst maintaining the faith that is so important to them.

Current role

I have been in my current role for just 10 months. I have always had a connection with older people and a passion to care for them.

In my current role I can promote, through leadership, a high standard of person-centred care to enable residents to live that fulfilled life.

The role is very different to what I first expected. You can have as many great ideas and visions as you want but you are unable to deliver them all yourself and not everyone is as eager to follow.

However, by learning new skills on management training such as My Home Life and obtaining Level 5 in Leadership and Management, I am finding ways of empowering my staff and coaching them to share the vision so we can all work better together.

The job in many ways exceeds my expectations, it is great to see the difference we can make, but it is not without its challenges.

There is a lot that could be improved within health and social care from a national perspective; in particular, more funding is needed so this does make the job hard at times as a budget can only be stretched so far.

The best part of my role is seeing the residents happy and living that fulfilled life.
An example of this happened when we held a Songs of Praise at Florence House with a cream tea. One of the residents said to me that she was happy living here and this had been the best day of her life so far!

The hardest part of my role is managing staff. I like to be liked by everyone, but as a manager this is not always possible as at times, we must implement things that people don’t like.

NCF Rising Stars

I feel so privileged to have been nominated by the Society’s Director. When they asked me if I was happy to be nominated by them, I felt so blessed that they thought I was a suitable candidate.

I didn’t really think that I would be successful in being one of the chosen Rising Stars. However, I was successful and became one in June 2019. I am hoping to gain lots of new skills and ideas from the programme which I can take back to Florence House and enable me to be a better leader. I want to help all of my staff become rising stars.

I am looking forward to working closely with my mentor and learning from his experiences and seeing how the company he works for does things and see if we can share ideas.

The future

At this point in time, I don’t have any desire to move on from my current position; I enjoy the contact with residents so would never want to be completely away from that. Residents are the people who make my job worthwhile and not seeing them or having daily contact with them would definitely take something away from my role.

However, maybe in the future I would like to look for a promotion to that of my line manager. One of the best things about the Rising Stars initiative is that I feel like it will help give me the tools and confidence to gain new qualities to reach my career goals. They may change as time goes on but as long as I have the knowledge base, I can build on it as I go.


My advice to other registered managers would be to follow your dreams and aspirations. Do all you can to fulfil your ‘vision’ of how you want you and your team to give the best care you can deliver.

Also, it is really important to believe in yourself. I don’t always find this easy but my managers have encouraged me; they have seen qualities in me that I may not have seen in myself and that has given me the confidence to be where I am today.

Senior management can support potential rising stars by giving their staff the chance to try new things and grow in confidence. If you show people that you believe in their ideas then they will flourish.

Now in its third year, the NCF Rising Stars Programme addresses the need to invest in and develop the skills of the next generation of leaders in social care, with registered managers from the NCF membership selected to take part each year.

For more information, contact Helen Glasspool at National Care Forum. Email: [email protected] Twitter: @NCFCareForum

Artwork by Disabled Artists Brightens up Dorking Train Station

A unique collaboration between disabled customers of Surrey Choices and Dorking station staff has led to the instalment of two pieces of creative art for travellers and visitors to Dorking to enjoy.

A group of artists from The Larches Activity Centre and a photography group from The Dorking Community Group worked together with station staff to create two truly unique pieces of artwork celebrating the beauty of Dorking town and the surrounding area.

A member of the Surrey Choices team,

Activity Facilitator Catherine Wigley, passes through the station regularly and got talking with station staff about her organisation, Surrey Choices, which provides care and support to disabled people across Surrey. Station staff were inspired by the Core Values of Surrey Choices and were keen to work together to create a lasting legacy for local people which would brighten up Dorking station.

Cat took the idea back to customers and staff at Surrey Choices who were delighted to get involved and to make a contribution to the local community.

Cat said, “Customers worked with station staff to design the artwork, making sure they had a good understanding of what was required, and together they set about taking photographs of the town and the local area and developing ideas for the creative design and the materials they would be using. It’s been an incredible process to watch the ideas take shape.”

The artworks comprise a textile work using glue technics onto stretched canvas as well as a mosaic depicting Dorking high street. The artists learnt about how to use the materials and the health and safety aspects of handling them, as well as the creative design process and about working as a team to a deadline.

Spencer Timothy Rolfe who attends The Larches said, “I enjoyed working on the mosaic and I am very proud to see it in Dorking Station and the smiles it puts on the customers faces. The coffee from the station cafe tasted great too!”

The artworks were revealed at a ceremony at Dorking Station on 2 October 2019, by customers from The Larches Activity Centre along with Rachel Halliday, Station Manager and Jerry Ratcliff a member of Surrey Choices Executive Team.

Rachel Halliday, Dorking Station Manager, said “I am extremely proud to be a part of this project, and the pleasure the customers from Surrey Choices have been given from it. Thank you very much Cat and The Larches”

Today is BBC Music Day 2019!

Are you taking part in BBC Music Day?

Please email us at [email protected] and [email protected] to let us know your plans. We’d love to hear from you!

BBC Music Day 2019 will kick start its initiative to help bring music to everyone living with dementia by 2020, working with all major organisations in this field.

I’ve witnessed my mother’s and my aunt’s experience with dementia and I know just how transformational music can be for people with this condition.
Nile Rodgers

Hundreds of events will take place across the UK in a celebration of the power of music to change lives, including the first ever music and dementia festival co-created by people living with dementia and the first NHS Dementia Village opening its doors ahead of its official launch.

More than 100 organisations are involved so far in this unprecedented collaboration including Alzheimer’s Society, Age UK, Alzheimer Scotland, Dementia UK, NHS England, Nordoff Robbins, Live Music Now, Playlist For Life, and Utley Foundation.

They’ll be working together the week of BBC Music Day to create events and take part in broadcasts celebrating the importance of music in improving the wellbeing of people living with dementia. This initiative will be reflected across BBC Radio, TV and digital.

Supporting the initiative is legendary, multiple Grammy-winning musician, Nile Rodgers. An ambassador for BBC Music Day 2019, Nile has had personal experience with family members affected by dementia.

You can join our ambitious initiative by hosting an event, supporting us on social media, or by simply spreading the word about the power of music to help people with dementia.

Download BBC Music Day Activities and Events – dos & don’ts

New Care Home Charter could ‘transform care’ for people in care homes

The Patients Association has today launched its Care Home Charter to improve medication practices for people living in care homes across the UK. Developed in collaboration with care home residents and their families, experts in health and social care and endorsed by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) among other organisations, the Charter aims to help support residents living in care homes to be actively involved in decisions about their care. It also provides a guideline for care home staff to follow in order to improve medication practices.

It is estimated that there are around 410,000 residents in care homes in the UK1. Many have complex needs including significant frailty, dementia and disability2. Research shows that care home residents are prescribed an average of 7.2 medications and seven out of 10 residents were found to have been exposed to at least one medication error3.
The Charter consists of a nine-point guideline for care home residents and their families, and is designed to promote and advance shared decision-making and improve patient safety. It emphases the importance of residents being involved in regular monitoring and review of medications, and states that medicines should only be given with a resident’s consent, unless they lack the capacity to provide it. In addition, the Charter also provides a nine-point guideline for care home staff to follow, stating that medicines should not be hidden by staff in food or drink, unless it is in a resident’s best interests and all legal requirements have been met. Other key points include that staff should ensure that an advance care home plan is in place for the resident, and that optimal oral and dental care is provided.

Piloted in 22 care homes across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the Charter received positive feedback from care home residents and staff. Initial feedback was requested on the implementation of the Charter, and on perceived outcomes six months post-implementation. A total of 16 (88.9%) out of 18 respondents from nine homes reported a positive response to the charter, with care home managers
describing it as ‘useful’ and saying that it ensured ‘safe administration of medication to
people with swallowing difficulties’. In a survey of 39 care home staff following the Charter’s implementation during the pilot period, the Charter was found to have improved staff confidence in several areas including knowledge of how to identify
swallowing problems, use of advanced care plans, administration of medicine, covert administration, and the laws underpinning these areas. Most respondents believed that the charter would increase involvement of residents in decision making, improving oral health, enhancing identification of swallowing problems, and improving the administration of medicine.

The Charter is the culmination of a number of years of work by the Patients Association.
In 2015, after a caller to the Patients Association helpline reported the difficulties a care home resident with dysphagia (swallowing difficulties) was enduring with their medication, the charity conducted a survey to investigate how widespread the problem was. Publishing the findings in a report that year, the Association found that in some cases, and against medical practice, medicines were being crushed for care home residents with dysphagia to swallow. Worryingly, we also found that some care home staff weren’t trained to spot the signs of a person with swallowing difficulties.
The Charter was developed by an expert panel including a mix of clinicians, patient representatives and an expert in healthcare law. Nurses, pharmacists, care home managers and speech and language therapists contributed to the document, with valuable input also received from representatives from national bodies including NHS England and the Care Quality Commission.

Rachel Power, Chief Executive of the Patients Association, said: “We’re delighted to launch our Care Home Charter, which is the culmination of years of work in this area by an array of experts across multiple disciplines in health and social care. The feedback from our pilot of the Charter in care homes across the UK demonstrates the great potential it has to transform care for residents, with an emphasis on establishing a two- way relationship between those receiving care and those providing it.

“The Government predicts that by 2025 there will be two million people aged over 85
living in care homes, so it’s vitally important that medication practices are improved for both existing and future residents. We hope this Charter will go some way to helping people in care homes and hope that the document is disseminated widely among healthcare professionals and care homes so it can benefit as many people as possible.”
Nicola Bent, Director of the System Engagement Programme at NICE, said: “People living in care homes have the same right to be involved in decisions about their care and treatment as anyone else and it’s important that they’re supported to do this. We’re therefore pleased to endorse the Patient Association’s Care Home Charter which will support health professionals in implementing our guidance on managing medicines in care homes.”

Professor Tahir Masud, President of the British Geriatrics Society, said: “This Care Home Charter for Medicines provides valuable advice, for both staff and residents, on how they can work together to improve care for older people living in care homes.

Experience tells us that people in residential care are sometimes taking inappropriate medications and the Charter will help raise awareness of this critical issue. Encouraging patients to make shared decisions about medication, as well as highlighting the importance of safe swallowing and optimal oral and dental care, will also help to
improve quality of life for care home residents. Professionals working in care homes provide an invaluable service and this Charter will help them continue to deliver the best possible care. The Patients Association is to be congratulated on producing this excellent document.”

Evidencing care electronically leads to increase in occupancy say care home owners

Care home owners and directors have identified that using an electronic care planning system can help to sustain and drive occupancy in their care homes. In a challenging environment, care homes have found that distinguishing their care home from other homes in the area, improving the care home’s regulatory rating, providing online care updates for family members, and providing a better quality of care to professionals has helped to drive up occupancy. These factors have been achieved using Person Centred Software’s Mobile Care Monitoring system.

Rishi Sodha, Care Director at Handsale Care Homes, a group of eight care homes in England, Scotland and Wales, has seen the ratings of his homes improve and sustain high levels of occupancy, “Every home in our group now has an overall rating of ‘Good’ or above with our regulations across England, Scotland and Wales. Regulatory ratings we have found have been a big selling point. This is especially true in one of our Essex homes, where we are the only home providing care for over 65’s with the rating of ‘Good’ in every KLOE with CQC. Person Centred Software’s system, and the evidence it allows us to present to regulators, has been a big part of this and so whilst other providers have seen diminishing returns, we’ve maintained a full home.”

For outside professionals, knowing that they can extract the information that they need and contribute to records much more quickly on an electronic care planning system means that they are more likely to refer people to placements at care homes.

Siobhan Mccoulough, Tissue Viability Nurse Specialist and Clinical Support Manager at OSKA, that provide pressure care products and support to care homes says, “Tissue viability nurses have a complex job in care homes that use paper documentation collating information from body maps, repositioning charts, nutrition and hydration charts and risk assessments to see signs of progress in healing wounds.

“It can sometimes take up to ten hours to gather the information needed. Whereas, it is much easier for us to gather information at care homes that use Mobile Care Monitoring. Live care is recorded digitally and is automatically collated with information from relevant charts and reports, a SSKIN assessment and body map with automatically attached photo evidence. Person Centred Software’s system is the future of care.”

It’s not just social workers and councils choosing which care homes to place people in. Families will investigate and choose the care home that they believe will provide the best quality of care for their family member. Person Centred Software provides the Relatives Gateway as part of its solution. This can be a unique selling point for care homes that are keen to differentiate themselves and offer reassurance and transparency to families.

Ernie Graham, owner of Graham Care Homes, including Cornford House in Tunbridge Wells, says, “The Relatives Gateway included in Person Centred Software’s solution gives family members access not only to care notes but a whole social network for sending photos and messages to keep in touch.

“The Relatives Gateway offers a great deal of reassurance to families, something vitally important given the great responsibility entrusted to us in caring for their family member. It’s a nice surprise for relatives to discover that the cutting-edge technology we use means they can keep in touch wherever they are in the world.”

Over 1,500 care homes in the UK are currently using Mobile Care Monitoring to evidence care electronically and drive outstanding care. 94% of CQC rated care homes using Mobile Care Monitoring are rated Good or Outstanding, and over 100 care homes have already improved their CQC rating since adopting the system.

There is a direct correlation between occupancy and industry regulatory ratings, so Person Centred Software has mapped Mobile Care Monitoring system to industry frameworks helping its care home customers confidently answer regulation questions and demonstrate their quality of care.

A new chapter for public services? Or the latest in a long line of teasers…

As the chancellor took to the dispatch box to pronounce on his first Spending Review, it was tweeted that the chamber emptied. MPs taking the opportunity to show their feelings for a curtailed spending review delivered in a fervent fluctuating environment.

Whilst MPs might have decided not to listen to the longer term plans of a government under fire, the rest of us tuned in – acknowledging that today’s announcements continue to matter – particularly those that relate to local government funding at this critical juncture in their budget setting and planning cycle.

As is increasingly the custom, much of the actual detail of the spending review had been pre launched. However, the figures for social care had been more speculative – so it was important to know the detail.

The figure announced was that local authorities would get an additional £1.5bn for social care.

But of course – as with all of these announcements – it is key to recognise that the detail reveal all. Firstly – I must acknowledge thanks to Richard Humphries at the Kings Fund for sharing the treasury text of the review. Helping to make it clear what the announcement actually means.

So very importantly – the actual detail is £1 billion on social care to go directly to authorities – but this is to be shared between adults and children.

Then the additional £0.5 billion, which is designated purely for adult social care, is to be raised via council tax precept which will require consultation and is in the gift of individual authorities as to whether or not they utilise this option. Not forgetting of course, that the challenge of precept raised income is that it does the least in the areas of the most need – i.e. where the ability to raise income from council tax is lowest.

This increase in funding was announced as being on top of the £2.5 billion of additional funding already allocated to social care. This implies that the pre-existing grants that have been added to the traditional social care settlement will continue. This is critical information, and provided at an exceptionally timely moment based on the announcements made by ADASS earlier in the week relating to the need for certainty to avoid the imminent decommissioning of services.

The Chancellor described this Spending Review as a new chapter for public services, and of course the announcements included much trailed additional funding for schools, police and health. Alongside an additional £2 billion for Brexit delivery next year.

However, what is also interesting is the hints at what might lie ahead in a future spending review (suspending the understanding of where we are in relation to stable government). Sajid Javid talked about how going forward there was a need for a new economic plan. The need to invest in economies that will grow and support the future of the UK. With this in mind, the need to cement the case for care as part of any economic powerhouse has never been more important. In research carried out in 2017-18 the economic contribution of adult social care to the UK economy was over £46 billion (£38 billion in England) – in comparison – for example to the £18 billion contribution of the car industry – or the £29.5 billion contribution of the cultural sector. This figure does not even acknowledge the £59 billion contribution recognised by the ONS in 2017 of unpaid carers. Therefore, we need to ensure that in any future government thinking, the contribution of the care sector to economic growth is front and centre of investment decisions. Particularly when the Chancellors speech focussed on the ‘need to prioritise investment in policies that deliver real productivity gains and boost economic growth in the long term’. Well, demography alone would suggest that this is one sector that is going to grow and grow in the long term.

In addition, the Chancellor noted the importance of infrastructure funding going forward. Again, there is the potential for some serious reframing of infrastructure to incorporate care. As flexible and home working models increase – the need for good quality transport and roads will remain. However, what will it be that really enables people to ‘get to work’? It will include having reliable, great care for their loved ones.

The final re-frame needed for the future is to move us out of the age old Cinderella syndrome experienced by social care. The Chancellor in his speech boldly stated ‘Health and Education aren’t just the names of departments – they’re lifelines of opportunities’. Well he is right – Health is not the name of a department – it is Health and Social care and it is vital that he and the Treasury recognise this. There is a symbiotic relationship between the two sectors that this spending review continues not to recognise. Voices from across health and care have continued to state that it is impossible to have an effective health service without an effectively funded social care service.

The chancellor recognised in his speech that this was a short term plan for social care – describing it as down payment on the fundamental reforms to be set out in due course.

However, without this reform – it feels less like a new chapter for public services – rather a belated additional page to the same old story for social care – providing promise – but no happy ending…

NCF to support Motitech’s Road Worlds for Seniors 2019 Championship

Vic Rayner, the Executive Director of the National Care Forum (NCF) will join Kelly Hartley, manager of Cherry Garth, a Fremantle Trust care home, Buckinghamshire (and an NCF Rising Star) and Stian Lavik, Chief Business Officer at Motitech to host the launch of The Road Worlds for Seniors Championship later today, Monday 2nd September 2019.

The Road Worlds for Seniors 2019 Championship is a global activity programme for cycling within care homes and care centres that will take place throughout September alongside the 2019 UCI Road World Championships in Yorkshire. It is supported by British Cycling, Sport England, Care England and NCF.

Vic Rayner said:
“The National Care Forum are delighted to be supporting this initiative…

The Road Worlds for Seniors 2019 cycling event is a fantastic example of the commitment towards active and engaging lives care homes embrace”

The Road Worlds for Seniors event sets the focus on physical activity for older people using its concept, Motiview, in which older people cycle through a choice of 1,700 locations on stationary bikes via a video projection that plays whilst the person pedals. The combination of exercise and visual stimulation increases activity levels in older people and gives them the opportunity to revisit familiar places from their childhoods and other important points in their lives.

This element of Motiview is especially important for those who live with dementia, as it provokes fond memories of familiar locations, such as their home town, or favourite holiday location, sparking conversations that bring the memories back to life. Everyone who participates will be rewarded for their efforts, with additional awards going to those who have cycled the furthest, and the care teams that have provided the best support.

If you have any questions relating to this press release please contact [email protected]

To learn more about Motitech’s Road Worlds for Seniors championship, click here:


Vic Rayner’s message of support:

The Somerset Care Group signs a 3-year contract with Altura Learning to transform L&D approach

The Somerset Care Group signs a 3-year contract with Altura Learning to transform L&D approach

The Somerset Care Group is one of the major care providers in Southern England and one of the largest not-for-profit care companies in the UK.

Recently, the Somerset Care Group has signed a 3-year contract with Altura Learning to help transform their approach to staff engagement, via mobile, anytime access to high quality learning – that was bespoke to their organisation.

The Group has over 3,500 staff across home care, care homes and disability services. By working with Altura Learning, the Somerset Care Group will be implementing the multi award winning Learning Management System (LMS) Bridge, across the whole organisation. The new LMS will allow the organisation to record, manage and report on their whole blended learning approach, creating their own bespoke online learning content to complement the content taken from Altura Learning.

The Somerset Care Group visited the WCS Care Innovation Hub to see a live demonstration of the learning platform Bridge, used by Altura Learning and delivered by Instructure, at an event organised in partnership with WCS Care and the National Care Forum (NCF).

Vic Rayner, Executive Director, the National Care Forum, commented, ‘I am delighted to hear that NCF member the Somerset Care Group is working with Altura Learning. Investment in the workforce is an absolute critical element of the delivery of high-quality care and we hear excellent things from NCF members who are already working with Altura Learning’.

Tommy Henderson-Reay, Digital Transformation Lead also at the National Care Forum, added, ‘nurturing a digitally confident and literate workforce is vital for social care providers. I am really pleased that the Somerset Care Group has thought about how they develop their workforce and meet their training needs. Altura Learning provides this support in an innovative way that is both high quality and digitally creative’.

Reviewing their training, the Somerset Care Group recognised that they also needed a flexible, cloud based, on-demand learning solution to complement their face-to-face training sessions, to provide a truly cutting edge, blended, high quality training solution.
Jess Henry, Head of OD and Learning and Development at the Somerset Care Group, remarked, ‘we needed to review our training process. We wanted tools to create our own bespoke online material, manage our face to face sessions, run webinars and survey learners. Altura Learning’s solution was the answer. We now have a wealth of best practice learning material at our fingertips’.

In the past 18 months, Altura Learning has moved 600+ care organisations and 100,000 care workers and managers on to the Bridge LMS. The Somerset Care Group is the latest organisation to implement Bridge into their organisation and to take the next step to innovating their approach to Learning and Development.

Bruce Adams, Head of Sales Europe, commented, ‘It’s fantastic to have the Somerset Care Group on board. Bridge is a truly best in class and innovative system. Couple this with the vision and drive of the team at the Somerset Care Group, who are committed to innovate and embrace technology to engage their staff in learning, it’s a perfect fit. Staff will benefit from bespoke, high quality, accessible learning which will continue to support the Somerset Care Group as a market and thought leader’.

To find out more about the Bridge learning platform, please visit:

NCF supports The Road Worlds for Seniors 2019

The National Care Forum is proud to support The Road Worlds for Seniors 2019 organised by our partner Motitech, the Norwegian company behind Motiview.

Motiview is a motivational tool that stimulates older people and people with dementia to be more physically and cognitively active.


Using an especially adapted indoor exercise bike, video and sound the participants, people living in care homes and visiting adult day care centres, take part in this annual, one-month event that coincides with the official UCI Road World Championships for professional cyclists from 22 – 29 September.

Many age-related disorders are caused by physical inactivity rather than age itself. That is why we try to build and facilitate a movement of focusing on physical activity and physical and mental wellbeing for older people and people with dementia, and the Road Worlds for Seniors is an important part of that campaign.

Through the Road Worlds for Seniors, Motitech want to emphasise that physical activity and sport is not only for the young and strong – it is for everybody and to change the focus on abilities instead of disabilities when it comes to older people living in care homes and people with dementia.

To motivate older people and people with dementia to be more physically active, the video and cycling concept Motiview is used. This allows the participants to cycle to videos from familiar streets and roads and childhood memories – as well as videos from their worldwide library. This stimulates physical exercise independently of functional levels – everybody can use it and experience the benefits of physical activity in this way. Motiview has been used for six years in the Nordics, and it has now been piloted in the United Kingdom together with Sport England and British Cycling.

As the official Road World Championships for professional cyclists is held in Yorkshire this year, Motitech have entered into a partnership with the British Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Sport England, British Cycling, Care England, National Care Forum, and others to make the Road Worlds for Seniors a grand event in this country as well. Last year, 2400 residents from care homes from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, United Kingdom, and Canada signed up for the championship.

Through the NCF Rising Star Programme, Motitech are now reaching out to care homes across the NCF membership and the nation, and the goal is to have about 2000 participants from care homes and users of adult day care centres from the UK taking part this year. They will be a part of this international championship and compete with thousands of others from the Nordics, Canada, Australia, and the US.

The championship has been run for two years already, and a lot of press coverage has sparkled in its wake, which aids in the process on focusing on this important issue. The aspiration is for the Road Worlds for Seniors to become the single largest sporting event in the world in number of participants, and we see this goal to be realistic to reach within a few years’ time.

This video shows some insights into the fun and joy around the Road Worlds for Seniors. Motitech exhibited at the NCF Annual Conference 2019 a highly successful and innovative event focusing on the Future of Care.