Vicky is one of the creators of CLGdotTV, where she also produces and presents programmes. She has 25 years experience of delivering projects in and for public sector organisations including government departments, local authorities, the NHS, and professional associations. Much of her work has been around digitally-enabled innovation and improvement.@vickysargent
Local authorities with social care responsibilities are considering the impact of the 'digital switchover' by BT and other network providers
The switchover, which is already underway, and is due for completion by 2025, is being undertaken by network providers, principally BT, to upgrade exchanges from analogue to digital technology.
This change has implications for users of devices that deliver alarm calls to call centres over the phone line. Analogue devices may not always work every time when connected via digital exchanges, creating risks for vulnerable people that use these devices.
A further risk is associated with the introduction of phone lines that use the internet to connect. Analogue phone lines have their own power supply, whereas digital lines that connect via routers, that are themselves connected to a property's electricty supply, are vulnerable when there are power outages.
Local authorities that run or commission Alarm Receiving Centres (ARC) are becoming aware of the safeguarding risks associated with the switchover and the costs of mitigating them. Meanwhile, as the video explains, NHSX have commissioned research to assess the issues and frame a response. Their report is expected in early 2022.