Nursing home portal of Western Uusimaa opens – nursing homes can now be compared, selected and switched

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2021-06-07 15:40

The nursing home portal makes it easier to compare and choose between nursing home options when it is time to choose a nursing home for yourself or an elderly relative. The nursing home portal presents nursing homes for the elderly in Western Uusimaa. It includes both municipally owned nursing homes and private and association-run nursing homes with municipal contracts, meaning all nursing homes that can be accessed with a service decision issued by the municipality. 

The nursing home portal makes the content and quality of the service visible and the information easily accessible. The service is available at hoivakodit.lu-palvelut.fi

“The nursing home portal is an open comparison and assessment service of nursing homes for all Western Uusimaa residents,” says Project Manager Salla Kälkäinen

An earlier version of the nursing home portal has been used in Espoo since the beginning of 2020. The renewed portal now opened contains more diverse content and serves the residents of Espoo, Hanko, Ingå, Karkkila, Kauniainen, Kirkkonummi, Lohja, Raseborg, Siuntio and Vihti. 

New transparency: service quality and resident satisfaction made visible 

The portal shows how satisfied the residents of each nursing home and their relatives are with the service and what the nursing home’s monitoring reports state. In addition, there is comprehensive information about the everyday life of the nursing home: location, housing units, rent, service languages and information about activities, food, opportunities outdoor recreation, staff and accessibility. There are also photos and information on whether there are currently vacant housing units in the nursing home. 

Nursing homes can respond to open feedback from relatives and show how they are improving the quality of their operations. 

“The nursing home portal makes quality visible in an entirely new way. When the service is good, it is reflected in the feedback from residents and relatives and in monitoring reports. The quality experienced by the customer determines which nursing homes are successful. It is in the interests of both customers and nursing home service providers that the highest quality ensures success,” says Tuula Suominen, Acting Director of Services for the Elderly in Lohja. She has chaired the steering group of the Nursing Home Portal Project. 

If a customer is dissatisfied with their choice of nursing home, they can switch to another.  The nursing home portal cannot be used to book or switch a nursing home place directly. Instead, the booking process proceeds through the services for the elderly people of the municipality of residence, as before.  

Content designed together with residents and relatives 

Residents of nursing homes and their relatives played a significant role in the design phase of the nursing home portal. The portal highlights information that is of greatest interest to users. 

“Together we defined content and appearance and tested usability. We will continue to collect user experiences and develop the service based on them,” says Salla Kälkäinen. 

The nursing home portal crystallises the cooperation that Western Uusimaa municipalities have already practised for several years to develop and harmonise 24-hour service housing. Municipalities jointly defined the quality criteria of the service and conducted the tendering process in 2014 and 2019. New nursing homes can be included in the system if they meet the quality criteria set by the municipalities. 

Open source implementation can also be utilised elsewhere 

The nursing home portal was created using an open source model, so it can be deployed elsewhere in Finland with relatively little effort and cost.  

“The code is openly available and usable by all. In Western Uusimaa, we are currently planning how the idea could be extended to other housing services,” says Salla Kälkäinen.