Traditionally, the MECS alarm system would connect to an Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) via a telephone line. If a service user needed assistance, a personal alarm or sensor in their home would raise the alarm. Help would then be sent.
But operational and functional issues were on the rise because analogue systems were no longer being maintained by network providers.
In 2017 the project team started working with the Council’s ICT Team, Larbert-based social enterprise Haven Enterprise, and alarm provider Doro Care, to replace thousands of analogue alarm systems in people’s homes with pre-programmed digital-ready ones. In March last year, 4000 had been installed.
At the same time, the team worked with Chubb Systems to develop and install a digital ARC that would provide call handlers with immediate and secure information on each alarm call while also continuously checking connections with alarm devices, instantly detecting and responding to a problem if one occurs.
"Installing digital-ready alarm systems means we can continue to offer our current telecare service while migrating MECS users to an end-to-end digital telecare service. We hope that transition will be complete by the end of this year," said Pauline Waddell, MECS Team Manager at Falkirk Council. "We'll then look to build on our digital ambitions, offering new choices and services that will help service users feel safer and ultimately allow them to lead independent lives for as long as possible.