In 2022, a master’s research* was conducted to discover the need for the development of remote services for people with disabilities. The research is a part of Centria University of Applied Science’s RoboSote project. Hublet and Central Ostrobothnia’s public healthcare and social services association named Soite are partners for this research project.
The Hublet tablet solution was piloted for two months in the disability care centre Kompassi and housing service Mäntyvintti – both belong to Soite. There were five customers and eleven employees participated in the pilot and research.
Remote service enables communication despite obstacles and increases the feeling of togetherness
Live broadcasts were used to connect with customers between two units when the customer had obstacles to participating face-to-face in the care centre’s activities. With the help of the Hublet solution, the customer got the feeling, that belongs equally to the crowd.
“Hublet has given us freedom. Especially, when it has these Sim-cards, so we can take Hublet with us outside. If we want to go to the woods to take pictures or make trips then we can, with Hublet, help those clients that can´t actually come with us, get the same feeling for example via live streams.” says Mika Lehtimäki, Instructor of Mäntyvintti, Soite.
The live broadcasts between Kompassi centre and Mätyvintti increased customer satisfaction. One customer – Heikki – felt that the live connections brought too many memories to his mind. He liked it. Another customer also shares the same feeling.
Customer Pirkko: “..too many memories come to mind.”
Easy-to-use tablet solution that enhances customers’ experience
The Hublet tablet made it easier for the customers while they waited for the employees in the Kompassi centre. Customers felt that using a tablet provides learning experiences, more independence, and also more meaningful free time. The positive effects customers got from the tablet were relaxing, calming down and learning.
The customer also received sensory experiences. For example, watching a nature video calmed the customer down, or some customers wanted more information about exercise. Playing food games on Hublet also increased the customer’s general knowledge about healthy eating.
Customer Kari: “Yoga…music… calms my mind”
Customers generally found using tablets easy. According to several customers, the tablet was also safe to use. All customers would also recommend the Hublet tablets for disabled people. It enables them to gain more knowledge and skills which they haven’t had a chance to learn on their own. Especially, for those that had never used digital devices before.
“Surely even someone who doesn’t know how to use a smartphone will learn right away.”, says customer Anja.
Depending on each customer’s ability, some customers may need occasional or regular access to the Hublet tablet’s usage guidance and support. According to the employees, it was easy to personalize the content of the tablet to the customer’s interest.
“So, those people that haven’t used so much any kind of technology, now can learn those skills and use Hublet even independently. Because of that, I’m very satisfied that we got to be part of this pilot. Plus, it gives us workers more peace and a chance to work with other clients that can’t use Hublet.”, adds Lehtimäki.
Tablet service brings benefits to the disability care units’ operation and increase the well-being of disabled people
The conclusion of the study was that the tablet service brings benefits to the operation of the units. It is useful for adult clients with intellectual disabilities and for the units’ employees.
The customers had something profound to do in their free time. They used programs on Hublet tablets that increased their knowledge and skills. Some helped them to calm down and reduce their fears. Using digital content on tablets increased the customer’s ability to concentrate and their overall satisfaction, which was seen to increase the customer’s well-being.
The employees’ jobs at these two units also became easier and added versatility to their working days. Using a tablet was felt to make the time the customer and the employee spend together becomes more meaningful.
Lehtimäki says, ”When there’re different kinds of clients, sometimes there’re some conflicts. We’ve had to try to calm down these situations through discussion. But now there has been less need for that kind of conversation because Hublet has calmed down the situation.”
From the employee’s point of view, the Hublet solution was a kind of tool that simplified and facilitated their working day.
More opportunities by improving the service
While there are lots of benefits from tablet solution for disability care centres, there are still rooms to make it better. The research suggested that increasing the images to explain the navigation on the tablet will be more helpful for people who cannot read. Besides the live stream service, a ready-made live program would be beneficial and help employees to work with many customers at the same time.
For a full research report, contact us here.
*This thesis report was conducted by Minna Kauppinen, a Master’s student in Specialist in Digital services promoting well-being at Oulu University of Applied Sciences.