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News | 29 May 2020

Vodafone connects hospices, care homes and learning disability houses in Wales

Vodafone UK has donated free unlimited data SIMS to more than 260 patients and elderly people receiving end-of-life care in Wales.

The donation of 265 unlimited data SIMs, together with tablets generously donated by the public, means that sick and elderly people receiving care can stay in touch with their friends, family and loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new technology and connectivity has been deployed in 15 hospices in Wales, including in Llandudno, Wrexham, Conwy and St Asaph.

Tablets and unlimited data SIMs have also been donated to care homes, hospitals and learning disability houses across North Wales.

Yvonne Lush, Head of Clinical and Patient Services at Nightingale House Hospice in Wrexham, said: “We’ve been using the iPads to keep our patients connected to family and friends, also known as ‘virtual visiting’.

“We were able to facilitate one of our patients visiting their spouse who was an in-patient in hospital. This was touching, emotional and very welcomed.

“We have also been looking at how we use this technology in the future and we believe there are opportunities to assess and support patients virtually, especially those who have difficulty with mobility or transport due to condition or location.”

Donating technology that connects patients and families means that they’re able to stay connected through video calling – whether that’s in a care home, during recovery, or in some cases, during end-of-life care.

Claire Williams, Manager of Sandford Care Home in Prestatyn said she was “absolutely delighted and overwhelmed” to receive the Vodafone SIMS and donated tablets.

“Having the iPad brings so much joy to the residents. Their faces light up when they see their family members appear on video calls.

“Having an iPad to communicate with the outside world during such a difficult time has definitely had an emotional benefit to our residents.”

Ceri Brown, a Registered Manager at Park Lodge Residential Care Home in Saint Asaph, said: “Over recent weeks, changes have been introduced which can be difficult for some of our residents to understand. It is important that within this changed environment we find ways of creating a new normality for our residents, which restores their feelings of safety and well-being.

“A key element of this is to ensure that contact with loved ones is maintained.”

Ms Brown also said she and her staff had received IT training which gave them the expertise to show residents how to video call their friends and family.

  • To read more stories and features about how Vodafone is #KeepingTheUKConnected click here.