Direct Healthcare Solutions

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Direct Healthcare Solutions's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Direct Healthcare Solutions is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

Managing Director James Puttick
New and unique hoist, where
hoist is recessed in the rail
The role of technology in health and social care is an
increasingly discussed topic in political circles. Apps,
devices and other efficiencies are thought to be some
of the keys to improving care, especially as the population
ages. Direct Healthcare Solutions are playing their part in this
transformation by offering innovative solutions to customers
who need them, whether that be in the form of ceiling hoists
with wifi-enabled data transfer that records data such as
the number of lifts performed each day, or, more recently, a
product called “Smart Floor”, which can detect falls remotely.
The latter has not only proven itself to be effective but is
also efficient and cheaper for businesses. Managing Director
James Puttick tells
TheParliamentary Review
more about this
technological push forward.
We supply and install healthcare equipment, primarily into new buildings, care
homes and hospitals. Our work is often of particular help to people with mobility
issues, meaning we can also bring equipment to individual properties. It’s worth
being clear about the sort of items we install – we supply fixed instruments, devices
and equipment.
An important component of our services are the design and planning stages of
our work. Having the products is one thing, but installing them properly so that
they are 100 per cent effective is another, more difficult task. We have to be
closely involved with our clients from an early stage, which ensures our solutions
»Managing Director:
»Founded in 2010
»Based in Wiltshire
»Services: Supply, install
and maintain healthcare
»No. of employees: 7
»Recently installed a hoist
system on DIY SOS
Direct Healthcare
Highlighting best practice
are to specification and efficacious.
Integral to this effort is the use of CAD
software, which realistically simulates
what the equipment will look like
when actually installed, as well as
allowing us to carry out our work with
Showing a way forward for
the care sectors
We produce, among other things,
ceiling hoists that effectively transfer
people who have lost mobility function
in some way; bathing systems that
allow patients with reduced posture
control to clean themselves; relaxing
sensory devices that produce music,
light and vibrations; and, last but not
least, our new and innovative solution
to fall detection – essentially, we
install sensors under the floor, which
allow carers who aren’t immediately
present to know when an incident that
requires attention has happened.
The products we sell are at the
technological fore of healthcare and
have real benefits for carers, who can
often be overworked. For example, at
present, there is a law that states that
people with limited mobility must have
a pull cord at hand by a bed or toilet.
Although this undoubtedly helps,
there are obvious limitations to its
effectiveness in all scenarios. Therefore,
to know if someone has fallen, a carer
must simply check in person at regular
intervals – by which time it is possible
that they may have arrived too late.
The fall-detection solution we provide
not only allows this task to be carried
out remotely but also enables carers
to trace risky behaviour on a screen
– which can be especially important
for individuals with dementia, for
example. We’re particularly confident
in the utility of “Smart Floor” and are
championing it as a standard product
of the future.
We champion these solutions not just
to potential clients but to the wider
world, including with government
through the Govconnect conferences.
We have hosted a talk at the Dementia
2020 conference at the Royal Society
of Medicine and will be hosting further
events. We do this because we are
firmly convinced that the technology
we can offer the sector can improve
lives and make both health and social
care cheaper.
Smart Floor signals
problems to tablet
Tablet software which
gives live updates
We champion
these solutions
not just to
clients but to
the wider
Potential difficulties that lie
One of the challenges for us is that,
as an SME, we and companies like us
are not always given the platform to
speak up about the issues that affect
the sector. To get a seat at the table is
difficult and requires a lot of energy.
Ultimately, we feel this is important,
and much of our focus is therefore on
achieving this at the moment.
To talk about Brexit might be a bit
repetitive, but we have to be honest
about the fact that this is one of the
most important issues to us at present.
This is because most of the products
we import come from the EU. To give
just two examples, Smart Floor comes
from Finland and the ceiling hoists
from Denmark. We cannot be sure that
we will continue to get our products at
the price we currently enjoy; all we can
do at the moment is hope that Britain’s
future trading arrangement with the
EU is favourable. Even an overcoming
of uncertainty would do a lot to help
our business.
Knowing our strengths and
working to them
Despite some of the aforementioned
trepidation, we nonetheless have faith
in the longevity of our company and
products as well as the demand for
our solutions. We have carved out a
niche in the market that we know has
the potential to help a lot of people.
On top of that, we are always looking
at ways in which we can improve our
offering even further, by seeing what
new technologies can reduce costs,
require less work and create better,
more informative analytics.
Another strength which gives us
optimism for the future is that we are
small enough to be agile and pursue
new paths. We can provide tailored,
individualised solutions for our clients
– something especially appreciated by
those with unique challenges. In short,
our focus on technology and our ability
to adapt will allow us to continue
moving from strength to strength.
We have carved
out a niche in
the market that
we know has
the potential to
help a lot of
One of our hoist

This article was sponsored by Direct Healthcare Solutions. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Michael Gove.

Rt Hon Michael Gove's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Michael Gove

This year's Parliamentary Review comes at a momentous time for parliament, as we collectively determine the destiny of the United Kingdom. 

On October 31, the UK will leave the European Union. The successful implementation of this process is this government's number-one priority.

Three years after a historic referendum vote, we will deliver on the decisive mandate from the British people. Trust in our democracy depends on it. Until that final hour, we will work determinedly and diligently to negotiate a deal, one that abolishes the backstop and upholds the warm and close relationship we share with our friends, allies and neighbours in the EU. But in the event that the EU refuses to meet us at the table, we must be prepared to leave without a deal.

As the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, it is my job to lead on this government's approach, should that scenario happen. Preparing for Brexit is my department's driving mission. But while I am leading this turbocharged effort, the whole of government is committed to this endeavour.

Ministers across Whitehall are working together to ensure that every possibility is considered, every plan is scrutinised and every provision is made. A daily drumbeat of meetings means that we are holding departments accountable, so that preparations are completed on time.

The chancellor has confirmed that all necessary funding will be made available. And we have mobilised thecivil service, assigning 15,000 of our most talented civil servants to manage our exit from the EU.

We will make sure that on November 1, there is as little disruption to national life as possible. Our trade relationships will continue to thrive, thanks to agreements with countries around the world worth £70 billion. Our country will remain secure, thanks to nearly 1,000 new officers posted at our borders. And the 3.2 million EU nationals now living and working among us can remain confident, with absolute certainty, of their right to remain in the UK.

Above all, our goal is to be transparent. Soon, we will launch a public information campaign so that citizens, communities and businesses are ready and reassured about what will happen in the event of “no deal”.

In my first few weeks in this role, I have travelled to ports and tarmacs, borders and bridges, all across the UK –from the seaside of Dover to the rolling green hills of County Armagh. I have heard from business owners and border officials, farmers and hauliers. They are ready to put an end to uncertainty. And they are ready to embrace the opportunities ahead.

Our departure from the EU will be a once in a lifetime chance to chart a new course for the United Kingdom. Preparing for that new course will be a herculean effort. But this country has made astounding efforts before. We can do it again.
Rt Hon Michael Gove
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster