Arranging a trail device at Safecare Technologies

Safe Care Trial Information

Information for Trials

The following document is designed to provide advice for Speech and Language Therapists who may be considering or arranging a trial of a device for a client.

Why trial a device?

The purpose of trialing a device may be for many reasons including:
  1. Establishing the correct device for your client.
  2. Testing out multiple apps or communication software to meet your client’s needs.
  3. Providing your client and those supporting them with examples of technology available.
  4. Examining the impact of the introduction of a high-tech system in your client’s environments.
  5. Providing invaluable clinical information regarding your client’s current communication abilities and scope for learning and development.
  6. Establishing if the device meets their physical needs or if adaptations are required.
  7. Allowing your client and their family to make an informed decision about pursuing a device or choosing not to.

Tips for a successful trial:

  1. Planning prior to trial about the duration of the trial and establishing an understanding about the potential upset it may cause to the client when the device is returned.
    1. This can be challenging for some clients to understand and must be considered in the decision making
    2. A visual representing the duration that the device will be in their possession may help e.g. a calendar with a 2 week period mapped out for the device.

  2. Establish where the device will travel to during this time (e.g. school/hospital/day service)
    1. Ensure if the device is travelling beyond the client’s home that all relevant parties are involved in the planning and any training you provide.
    2. If the device is travelling to a school or centre on a bus or taxi, it is important that if the AAC user has an escort, SNA or another adult supporting them on this journey that they are aware of the device and can support AAC user in keeping it safe and using it in transit.

  3. Decide on who will receive the device and where it will be returned from.
    1. SafeCare use a courier service who will drop/collect the device from a designated area o It may be best to deliver the device to the SLT to allow any programming that needs to take place to be done in advance.
    2. Ensure all working parts are back in the original packaging for collection e.g. the box they were delivered in with charger and any additional accessories included.

  4. A meeting with support teams (parents/carers, education, employment, hospital staff) from all environments included in the trial is often useful. If this can be done together e.g. a school/home meeting it will save time but may not always be possible.
    1. This time can be used to demonstrate the device and explain the goals set out for the trial period. You can also answer any questions that may arise at this time.
    2. Bring along or send useful documents to the support team that may provide them with information to refer to during the trial.

  5. Consider the type of information you wish to capture during the trial to support your funding application. Information may fall under a number of categories, it may be useful to refer to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health Framework (ICF) to support the information gathered (see link below)
    1. Language
    2. Interaction/Social communication
    3. Behaviour
    4. Engagement & Participation

  6. Clinical observations will be invaluable during the trial, along with reports from all relevant parties. Schools/Day Services often can provide a wealth of additional information and may provide a short supporting document if requested to accompany the funding application. 


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