17 April 2018

Folkhälsan is maximizing the use of RAI

Kira Exell-Paakki, Director of Housing and Social services.
Folkhälsan, a non-profit organization in the social and health sector, was founded in 1921. From the very start the goal has been to improve the health and quality of life especially among the Swedish speaking population. Folkhälsan has about a hundred local branches in Finland and approximately 19 000 members. It employs approximately 1500 people.

Folkhälsan is at the same time a non-governmental organization and an important social and health service producer, producing for instance child protective care, day care, youth work, supportive housing and rehabilitation.

– We have used RAI since the first pilot project. RAI Long Term Care (LTC) has been in use constantly. RAI Home Care (HC) was on hold for a while because some changes in our own organization, but it is now in use and has been for a long time, says Kira Exell-Paakki, Director of Housing and Social services.

She underlines that everything they do at Folkhälsan is done with the customer in mind.

– The customer is always in focus. This applies to the use of RAI as well. When we do an assessment we do it with the intention of improving the everyday life of a customer.

Lucrative use of collected information

At Folkhälsan the use of RAI is a natural part of everyday life and work.

– RAI is primarily a tool for the client's own nurse. The nurse is responsible of doing RAI assessments on a regular basis, but RAI is also used by the whole multi-professional team depending on the situation. The use of RAI is a continuum where daily documentation is the summation. When planning and documentations are done on a regular basis, the bi-annual RAI assessment is easily done and a customer's situation is always authenticated, Exell-Paakki explains.

At Folkhälsan the collected information from RAI assessments is being put into good use.

– When we do a RAI assessment for a client we stop and think what the results of the assessment really mean for the customer. All our customers have their personal day programs and rehabilitation programs.

– We try and find the basic corner stones for a good life and the client's inner resources. Life has to be worth living every single day.

Quality and security

Exell-Paakki says that RAI is used on every level in the organization.

– In our strategic work we use a so called balanced scorecard, which we call The Map & The Compass. It sets the frames, directions and goals for how to navigate in a constantly changing world.

– How are we doing? What is our situation in comparison to other service producers and within our own organization? How are things compared to before and what has changed? Where are we going?

– We keep track of our own doings very carefully and we have learned to enjoy positive feed-back as well. It is easier to take the compliments when the indicators show that the compliments are justified.
At the same time RAI feels as something secure as big changes in the social and health sectors are being prepared on a national level.

– As service producers we can show what quality and cost efficiency look like when measured objectively. I strongly believe that RAI will have an even more important national role assessing the need for services and monitoring quality. Folkhälsan has been very proactive in taking RAI on board from the get go.

Aiming for green indicators

Besides RAI Folkhälsan also uses other measuring tools to monitor their work.

– We have noticed that the more green RAI indicators we get, meaning that the results are better than the national mean average, the better the department is doing in general. The green RAI indicators correlate directly with the financial results and the wellbeing of the staff, Exell-Paakki explains.

Director of Housing and Social services, Kira Exell-Paakki trains her own staff how to use RAI and twice a year she visits Folkhälsan´s every housing unit.

– We go through the changes of the indicators together and try to figure out the reasons for the changes and what we can do to modify things. We set concrete goals that can be measured by numbers. The information provided by RAI shows us the strengths of the units and also what we should improve.

Exell-Paakki highlights the commitment of the management

– The management of Folkhälsan has been committed to RAI since 2000. I report the RAI-results annually to the highest management. The whole organization is very interested in developing things, setting goals and improving the business.

Kira Exell-Paakki is a RAI person to the bone.

– Once I get started on RAI there's nothing stopping me. We still have things to develop when it comes to the usage of RAI; we could utilize it better, more efficiently and more diversely. One important goal this year is to start using the quality module and benefit from the up-to-date information that it provides.