The Measurement for Family and Self-Advocates
Measuring the success of the technology supports put in place will help families, self-advocates, case managers, and providers determine if the plan is working, if supports should be removed, or if additional supports would help achieve the desired lifestyle goals of the individual.
Measurement should occur often enough that adjustments may be easily made, but not so frequently that the process becomes overwhelming. Within the first year, measurement may occur every three months, and then move to every six months or once a year as the plan is fine-tuned to the individual.
Review the Plan, Goals, and Objectives
When measuring the success of the technology plan, which can begin as early and be as often as resources allow and stakeholders are comfortable with, first start by reviewing the initial care plan. Ensure everything in the plan is in place and then have an open discussion to verify the technology addition(s) are meeting the goals and objectives initially set by the team.
Considerations during review:
- Review the Care Plan/Community Support Plan goals and objectives
- Determine if the technology is being used how it was proposed
- Decide if goals and objectives were achieved
- Assess if critical needs are still being met
- Identify outcomes for discussion
Once these and other questions brought forward from the care plan have been answered, the team will be able to identify which areas are working and which supports may need adjustments.
If the family is also responsible for administering/providing the support and technology, it may be helpful to review the Provider Measurement page or “Measuring for Success” to account for additional financial and person-centered goals.]
Assess Outcomes and Identify Opportunities
Check-in with team
Family members and self-advocates should think intentionally about the new changes in routine and care and how that has had either a positive or negative impact. Ask staff and case managers their opinions as well, as perspectives may differ.
Some questions to think about and ask:
- How do I / my family members feel about the new technology supports?
- What do I / my family members like about it?
- What am I / my family members uncomfortable with?
- Has the staff identified any areas for improvement?
- Does the case manager have additional thoughts on the plan or changes/recommendations?
Review any data collected
To identify if the technology is working as expected (or identify areas for improvement), review any data collected, and discuss findings with the provider. The data collected for review will vary depending on the technology supports in place but will allow the team to identify patterns and trends. These patterns may be useful when discussing the overall workability of the plan, show areas for improvement, or opportunities for increased independence. For example, data may show the number of calls placed by the monitoring equipment, the number of times a task was completed independently, response times by staff, etc.
Whether funded through waivers, private pay, or provider investment, families/self-advocates should be aware of the financial measures that will help gauge the success of the project. Weigh the costs of a specific goal/objective and how much it would cost with or without technology supports. Think not only in terms of actual dollars but also the time, energy, and resources of the person served and family.
Make Recommendations or Alterations
Measuring the success of a technology support plan is important to ensure everything is working as expected and that family/self-advocates are happy with the results. It is also important at this stage to explore support usefulness or identify opportunities for increased independence or privacy.
During review, families and self-advocates should ask:
- Can anything be simplified?
- Is there too much technology for one outcome?
- Can anything be expanded?
- In areas where success has been achieved, is it possible to take the results even further?
- Are there additional duties that technology supports can assist with to achieve the desired outcomes?
As items are added or removed, the team should follow the same process: have a conversation to determine the desired outcome, find and create a plan to put the new technology in place, obtain funding, implement the technology supports, and finally review and measure the success of that technology.
For additional questions regarding utilizing technology supports in care plans and how to implement them successfully, find a mentor or channel to get the answers you need.