Care Charts UK is a social enterprise that provides products to help improve the work of carers and the quality of life for those they care for.
Care Charts UK was set up in July 2010 by Zoe Harris in Horsham, West Sussex. She decided to launch the business while looking after her husband who was in the final stages of dementia and about to go into care.
Zoe recognised that carers are often too busy to go through pages of detailed care plans, and English is often not their first language, so she put together simplified care wall charts based on a system of easy to understand symbols to enable her and her carers to effectively look after her husband.
Communication is crucial between a patient and their carers and through the wall charts Zoe hopes carers can provide the best possible care, particularly when their patients can no longer communicate their needs for themselves.
The wall charts come in 11 different shapes and have 18 symbols to allow staff to find the information they need, such as food preferences or mobility issues, quickly and easily whilst retaining confidentiality.
By 2015 over 1,000 care homes had adopted the care charts, and it was when hospitals started taking an interest that Zoe realised their challenge was in collecting information about a person in the first place. This inspired her next project Mycarematters, an online service where people, or someone on their behalf, can upload the information healthcare professionals need in order to provide person-centred care: to treat the whole person and not just their medical condition.
In early 2017 two NHS Trusts started trialling different ways of displaying a patient’s Mycarematters record by their bedside with extremely successful results.