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The European voice for informal carers

E-care service for safe living at home with amazing results in Slovenia

From 2022 Slovene Federation of Pensioners Associations – ZDUS, a member of Eurocarers, has been actively involved in a nation-wide project called »E-care at home«. A project which is run by the leading partner Telekom Slovenije, a company which is a leading provider of comprehensive communication services in Slovenia and the only provider of E-care service in Slovenia that has obtained a license and is registered at the Ministry of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities as a legal entity that provide social welfare services. The project was supported in 2022-2023 by the Ministry of health and from 1. 10. 2023 by the newly founded Ministry of Solidarity-Based Future.

With government funding the project consortium of Telekom Slovenije and ZDUS enabled, in 2022-2023, more than 5.000 older people the use of E-care service (free of charge), which significantly improved their quality of living and in some cases also saved lives. Each user received a free E-care package which included user-friendly equipment: an emergency phone with an SOS button,  a bracelet with an SOS button, a mobile movement detector on a pendant with an SOS button, SIM card with a mobile plan that supports unlimited incoming and outgoing calls and data transfer for the E-care service, assistance centre services, which were available 24/7/365 and technical support, maintenance, servicing.

With this project, it was proven that E-care can significantly improve the safety and quality of the daily living of older people and other vulnerable groups who still live at home and has come to be an important addition within the framework of the long-term care system. E-care provides immediate help to the user when he/she needs it, reduces the number of complications and unnecessary deaths, relieves family members or caregivers from stress and care related issues and reduces costs of medical and formal home care.

As part of the “E-care at home” project, which lasted 18 months, E-care service was provided to 5.086 representatives of vulnerable groups who live most of the day alone and rely on other people’s help: people aged 65+, disabled, people who are at risk of falling due to neurological or neuromuscular diseases or cognitive decline and dementia, people with chronic non-communicable diseases.

About 28.604 interventions were successfully carried out when calls for help were initiated (automatically via the fall detector or by the user), of which 313 interventions were carried out with the help of emergency medical aid (in some cases also with the intervention of the fire brigade and the police) and 1.986 interventions with the help of the users’ relatives. In 293 cases, users needed help due to a fall, and in 173 cases due to deterioration of their health (stroke, heart attack, etc.). More than 97.7% of E-care users were satisfied with the organization of the help they needed. The project was well received by the general and professional public as well, and received the GoDigital 2023 award for addressing an aging society.

The project will be running until 30. 6. 2025 and has currently about 4.500 users. ZDUS as a representative organisation of older people strives to promote the use of E-care among older people and is actively engaging volunteers in the filed to help older people in need to apply for the much-needed service, with the goal to improve the quality of their lives.

Contribution submitted on behalf of the E-care partnership consortium by Dijana Lukić, ZDUS

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