In today’s technology-enabled world, adult services social workers are looking for better ways to help them with their work, but they may be worried about how their clients will react.
In honor of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15, a day to bring together senior citizens, their caregivers, and governments to combat the problem of elder abuse, we want to show how implementing mobile technology can actually help adult services social workers improve the quality of interaction with their clients.
Workers at agencies that use a mobile app designed for adult services are able to update client and case information, complete new forms, and have the clients sign forms electronically on a tablet during visits.
Initially, social workers were worried their clients would be resistant to a change in how services were being provided. But with today’s technology where simply buying a gallon of milk means signing on an electronic signature pad, there have been no issues from clients, and amazing productivity gains and stress relief for social workers.
“I was a little iffy about how my elderly clients would handle the tablets… using technology, but they took to it great,” said Kristen Hamilton, Adult Services Social Worker for Beaufort County Department of Social Services.
The main benefits social workers experience are:
1. Improved Trust
With social workers having the ability to record and transcribe interviews or type case notes with their tablet, they have found they can be more engaged during the interview, building trust with those who are most in need.
2. Faster Community Referrals
Social workers are also able to coordinate faster care, as known client and case information auto populates within all forms and both the client and the worker can sign the forms using the tablet. The worker can then send any medical and mental health forms to a referred community services provider, directly connecting their client to the help they require.
3. Complete Case History
The instantaneous access to all of their client’s documents, including all of the client’s past medical history, saves the worker time and the client benefits by knowing all their records are secure in one place.
To learn more about implementing technology in adult services agencies, we hope you’ll join us for our upcoming Webinar, “Adult Services: There’s an App for That,” on Tuesday, June 30 at 12pm Eastern.
Charles Barber is the Practice Management Consultant for Northwoods, where he works to ensure successful technology projects for state and county human services agencies. Charles' human services proficiency comes from his front line public assistance experience and through implementing, training and supporting numerous Northwoods technology projects.