Free Telecare system will now cost some Bedford residents £4.50 a week in switch to digital

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Some vulnerable residents in Bedford will now have to pay £4.50 a week for the previously FREE Telecare system.

Nationally, Telecare devices are making the shift from analogue to digital devices, in preparation of the phased move to the new digital telephone network expected by the end of 2025.

And although it’s still free for those who already receive a care package from Bedford Borough Council – others will have to pay the new £4.50 weekly charge, with those suffering from either a disability or long-term chronic illness paying a reduced £3.75 a week.

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For the uninitiated, the Telecare provides a range of different items which can ensure the elderly and disabled stay independent in their own home. They include:

Bedford Borough Council has introduced the chargeBedford Borough Council has introduced the charge
Bedford Borough Council has introduced the charge

Personal alarms

A falls detector

Embrace watches

Chair and bed sensors

Medication boxes

Councillor Robert Rigby, portfolio holder for adult services, said: “We have worked very hard to put together a scheme which offers our users really good value for money, it is not something I wanted to introduce at all, but is a decision we have been forced to make. The service will be kept under constant review.”

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