Care staff, those who attend to the day-to-day needs of people in residential facilities, represent an important segment of the health-care provision of those entrusted to their care. The potential use of technology by care staff has not been a focus of researcher attention. The work reported here provides initial steps in addressing that gap, considering both the design requirements for this population and presentation of early work on a software system for use by care staff. We describe the development of a software tool for use by care staff, called Portrait, and report two studies related to factors affecting technology use by this population. The results of this research are promising, with Portrait being very positively received by care managers and care staff. Use of this software in a care home for over a month indicated continued use, with care staff returning to the system throughout the test period. The contributions of this research are the identification of factors important in working with a care staff population, the introduction and evaluation of a novel software tool for care staff in residential homes, and the highlighting of potential benefits of technology in assisting care staff.
Webster, G., & Hanson, V. L. (2014). Technology for supporting care staff in residential homes. ACM transactions on accessible computing, 5, 8. https://doi.org/10.1145/2543577