Bield Housing and Care

Bield Housing and Care

Our Journey to Digital Telecare – Bield Housing and Care

Key drivers for transitioning to digital telecare:

  • Business Strategy is based upon supporting people to live independently in their own homes.
  • Transitioning from analogue to digital would allows improvements to be made to the current service and provide a basis for the development of new forms of telecare in the future.
  • Adopting digital systems will reduce reliance on the end of life analogue communication infrastructure.

High level steps to enable key drivers:

  • Joined Digital Telecare for Scottish Local Government Pilot Programme;
  • Installed digital alarms at three developments (in Glasgow, Selkirk and Kirriemuir);
  • Significant work has been undertaken with key stakeholders to design and invest in Alarm Receiving Centre to be ready for digital signals;
  • Assisted manufacturers with the design of some digital alarm technology;
  • Conducted a penetration test to identify any cyber security weaknesses;
  • Conducted a Data Protection Impact Assessment;
  • Conducted a period of testing over a number of months that enabled problems to be identified and ironed out any problems before declaring the system ‘live’.


  • Digital Telecare for Scottish Local Government;
  • Legrand;
  • Inverclyde Council;
  • Renfrewshire Council.

Key challenges and overcoming them:

  • Requirement to build confidence in the new technology by demonstrating that it is effective and develop a culture shift to move away from a tried and tested method;
  • Technical issues arise from time-to-time requiring a different set of skills to diagnose and address.
  • Digital alarms also present with regular data (‘heartbeats’) to demonstrate that they are working, removing the need for test calls that were required for the analogue system. While this is beneficial, it also presents a challenge in deciding how many missed heartbeats should elapse before intervening.
  • With the BR24 ARC digitally-ready,the an increase in digital sending technology within properties is imminent. This will form the foundation for other improved peripheral communications for products like smart watches and medicine dispensers etc.

Published date: November 2020.