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How Do Pain Assessment Tools Improve Residential Care?

April 15th 2024

Accurate pain assessment in care homes is a game changer. It allows us to detect discomfort earlier and leads to more effective pain management strategies. But how do we detect pain in a resident who cannot communicate their pain effectively? This is where intelligent pain assessment tools come into play. 


At Select Healthcare, we use Pain Chek as a pain assessment tool for dementia, those with learning disabilities, or anyone who may struggle to describe the pain and discomfort they experience. In this article, we will look at how our care homes effectively use this revolutionary pain assessment tool to improve the well-being of our residents, while giving their families peace of mind.


What is PainChek?

PainChek is an advanced digital pain assessment tool that revolutionises how we identify and address pain, especially for residents who cannot communicate verbally. PainChek is a validated medical device and digital app that is used to assess pain levels and work out how best to treat the individual. This tool is especially useful in our care settings as it can help to identify the presence of pain, even when it is not obvious to nurses and care assistants. 


How Does PainChek Work?

Using AI technology, facial recognition and the numeric pain rating scale, the PainChek app can help our care staff complete a pain assessment in under 3 minutes. At Select Healthcare, our care staff use this tool to analyse the facial expressions, vocal cues, physical movements, behaviour and recent activity of our residents. After analysis, the app summarises the information and provides a pain score ranging from no pain, mild or moderate pain to severe pain. Care staff can then present this pain score to a GP or other relevant medical staff for further support.


What are the Benefits of Pain Assessment Tools in Our Residential Care Homes?

One of the most significant advantages of using tools for assessing pain is the ability to detect pain earlier. This means nurses and care staff can intervene sooner to alleviate pain and enhance overall well-being.

Assessment tools for pain like PainChek also provide solid information about how much pain someone is in, which means staff don’t have to guess as much. This ensures each resident receives appropriate pain management interventions to improve their care and make it more personalised.

Using a universal pain assessment tool like the painchek app in our care homes has many other benefits including:

  • Reducing human error through the use of Artificial Intelligence.
  • As technology improves, digitising our care homes helps us to keep up with the times and be more advanced. 
  • PainChek can help to reduce the inappropriate use of psychotropic medication.
  • Assessment tools for pain can lead to more therapy-based solutions and pain interventions.
  • This pain assessment tool also allows us to track the effectiveness of pain interventions through analytics.


How Does PainChek Improve Select Healthcare Homes?

Pain assessment and management are important aspects of high-quality care and support in our care homes. These aspects become even more crucial when supporting residents with advanced dementia, learning disabilities or those receiving palliative care who may struggle to express or describe their pain.

We understand that pain can affect a resident’s mood, sleep, appetite and social interactions. Unmanaged pain can also lead to complications such as decreased mobility, delayed wound healing and impaired impaired immune function. This is why we use PainChek to reduce suffering and ensure our residents’ needs are recognised promptly, regardless of their conditions or abilities.

Using PainChek in our care homes also allows us to effectively fulfil our legal obligations to provide pain management to residents. With this solution, we can advocate for our resident's needs and ensure their care is person-centred. This approach provides a huge amount of reassurance for family members with loved ones in our care.


Revolutionised Care at Select

In our care homes, we are always exploring new ways to improve how we care for our residents. PainChek is just one example of how we use technology to transform care and support in our group of care homes. At Select Healthcare, we believe that by embracing digital tools for assessing pain, we create exceptional and advanced care environments. To find out more about how we use PainChek or for more information about our wide range of care home services, contact us today.

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