Leading places is a national initiative which aims to set up and develop meaningful relationships between universities and regional ecosystems. Brighton is one of eight ‘Leading Places’ pilots in the UK, and is trialling innovative ways to promote healthier, more independent ageing.
Brighton’s project aims were to support the development of strategies in self-managed care for older people, to identify ways to prevent or delay them moving to more intensive care programmes. This was done through community-focused research by the partners at supported housing development Leach Court.
Dr Theo Fotis, Principle Lecturer in Nursing at the University of Brighton’s School of Health Sciences, successfully secured funding from Kent Surrey Sussex Academic Health Science Network for a Darzi Fellow to work on a ‘Digital Health Test Bed’ for a year.
This project is ongoing and involves develops a living lab in the City of Brighton and Hove, where a network of technical champions will focus on testing different digital devices and applications to reduce social isolation and remotely monitor vital signs, activities and emotions of older members of the community.
The initial pilot project was chosen because projected levels of demand for adult social care services outstrip the city council’s available resources and measures are being explored to support the most vulnerable residents in the city, to help them to remain as independent as possible.
The Universities of Brighton and Sussex have long standing working relationships across the city with health and social care providers.
The Leading Places programme shines a spotlight on the potential to elevate these relationships to a more strategic level.