collective voice

Thanks for dropping by our blog page. Our team of over 40 full-time experts use our people-shaped approach to #MakeBetterHappen for individuals, communities and organisations. With insight, co-creation and engagement at the core of all that we do, our mission is to help shape a well, confident and self-reliant society. Call us on 0845 5193 423

Is it time to get on board with the online wellbeing disruptors?

November 18, 2016 10:06

Easy answer – yes. But for a start, let’s commit heresy, and ditch the word ‘disruptor’. It’s already stopped being a useful concept and is now a meaningless buzzword.

The simple fact is that healthcare and wellbeing are branching out and embracing new ways of reaching more people in more effective ways. As health and wellbeing services in the UK are, in the main, commissioned (and often delivered) by the NHS and local authorities, new technology is having a significant impact.

So what does this mean for providers and commissioners like you? It’s all about understanding the consumer, as a recent report by PWC explains.

Our health and wellbeing platform at Puffell.com is based on a huge amount of qualitative research with people all over the UK and quantitative analysis of data. This research produced some genuine insight into their needs:

  • People want to do more for themselves but don’t want to be dependent on a traditional local ‘service’ to get results
  • People have great aspirations for their families
  • People are fed up with the traditional support model for lifestyle services
  • People are fed up with silos of support and want services joined up
  • People distrust local authorities and ‘Government’ and want to do things for themselves
  • People made little differentiation between NHS and ‘Government’

Puffell is based on these fundamental principles and is now being used across the UK as a front line ‘shop window’ of lifestyle services for citizens to get key information about lifestyles and long term conditions, set goals and track their progress. Service providers use the sophisticated back end as a case management tool, allowing them to provide the right level of support to every type of person locally – from those who need full on face to face support and interventions to those who just need signposting to the right tools, as well as everyone in between.

The good news is that however the user is supported, commissioners and providers are able to understand how whole populations are making lifestyle improvements and where to target their resources most effectively as a result.

And we are seeing it work: smokers are reducing the average amount smoked per day[1]; people are reducing the amount of alcohol units they consume each day[2]; and people tracking their weight are showing an average 4% body weight reduction[3].

A report by Appboy earlier this year showed that less than 20% of new health and fitness app users return the day after they first download it. Yet Puffell has proved to be used consistently over time by people trying to make a lifestyle change. Unlike other apps, you actually get to see the anonymous data behind it for your area.

Puffell is the only dedicated platform that has been developed in partnership with NHS CCGs, hospital trusts, community trusts, local authorities and Public Health England, and is endorsed by the NHS Innovation team.

It’s time to get on board with Puffell to support your citizens with lifestyle, wellbeing and long term conditions management.

To find out how you can get involved, contact Stuart Jackson on 0845 5193 423 or at stuart.jackson@icecreates.com

[1] Mean reduction of 7.4 cigarettes smoked over average of 158 days

[2] Mean difference of 4.3 units tracked per day over average of 127 days

[3] Mean difference of 3.1 kg tracked over average of 168 days

Taking the pain out of long term conditions

November 11, 2016 09:20

Everyone agrees that we need to take a patient centred approach to long term conditions management and lifestyle behaviour change.

Increasingly, we see lifestyle services being integrated (including smoking, weight management and alcohol) to provide a more joined up and holistic offer to people, with improved two way dialogue with primary care to support people with long term conditions.

All our insight research over the past decade or so has consistently shown that this is what patients and the public want. However, to do this effectively, we need to understand the needs of the system in a very different way. It’s not enough to understand the drivers; we need to drill down and identify the outcomes that would be expected across the whole system if it is to adopt a truly patient centred approach.

This means designing an approach that will deliver evidence of patient centred outcomes - these are unlikely to be clinical markers. Rather, they will be things that really matter to the patient. But we still have to be mindful of health care professionals’ desired outcomes – aligning with targeted clinical measures as well as softer measures such as patient experience.

In order to achieve this, we have to change the way that we work. The ICE excellence model effectively does this, moving us away from a culture of design in isolation and market test, to one of co-creation and collaboration.

The model follows a systemic approach by bringing all of your stakeholders together to co-design the future state. This places the patient at the very centre of the work and designs with them in mind, while also ensuring the needs of the wider system are met.

We involve the people in the system in every step of our programme design. In doing so, we make them true designers of the future, rather than validators of previous thinking.

Being outcomes focused, the model concentrates on values, beliefs and behaviours and supports a truly patient centre approach. This ensures that we design for the whole system - which is crucial in supporting patients to become engaged with their own health and condition management.

Supplementing the ICE excellence model, ICE’s health and wellbeing digital platform Puffell is an effective and evidence-based solution to achieve a truly patient centred approach to managing long term conditions and changing lifestyle behaviour. Puffell creates and delivers a lifestyles-based ecosystem that offers a targeted and universalistic approach for building greater wellbeing and resilience for society.

Puffell supports people at their point of need by understanding what’s important to them as individuals and building behaviourally-focused activation. Puffell then uses both technology and peer support to maintain that choice until it is habit formed.

Designed around the evidence and disciplines from behavioural science, cutting-edge digital solutions and strategy from the 9 wider social determinants of health, Puffell also empowers people by engaging the power of the 5 ways to wellbeing - connect, get active, be positive, learn new things and enjoy the power of giving.

Simple to use, beautifully designed and user friendly, Puffell has the power to build a society that is resilient, well and HAPPY.

Before designing and developing Puffell, we conducted a piece of insight that told us 7 things:

  1. People don’t understand/recognise their health and implications of poor health long term
  2. People want to do more for themselves but don’t know where to start
  3. People feel ‘frustrated’ and ‘abandoned’ – and the health system misses key opportunities to engage with the right tools
  4. People want to be treated as a ‘whole person’
  5. A plea - use channels that we use
  6. Lack of trust in government
  7. People have great aspiration - they want better, although they struggle to define what better is for themselves, yet they can almost always describe it to others who are important to them.

By building Puffell based on insight, we are also able to collect meaningful hard and soft data for individual areas:

  1. Clinical measures - which evidence that a patient or citizen has made positive progress
  1. People-centred outcome measures (PCOMs and PROMs) - a relatively new concept which involves putting patients, people, and their families and carers at the heart of deciding which goals are most valuable for individuals with a range of health conditions, rather than clinicians deciding what is best.

The data we are collecting is now evidencing outcomes, including: 

  1. Increased patient self care
  2. Better citizen self-management
  3. Reduced and redirected service demand
  4. Reduced health and social care costs via prevention and better managed conditions.

Joined up lifestyle services are now using Puffell to case manage clients and support them both online and offline – you can too!

To find out more about how Puffell can act as a lever of system change in your area, contact Richard Forshaw-Smith at richard@icecreates.com or on 0845 5193 423.

Puffell - a lifestyle based ecosystem

August 3, 2016 15:20

Puffell is an evidence-based solution to create and deliver a lifestyles-based ecosystem that offers a targeted and universalistic approach for building greater wellbeing and resilience for society.

What matters to you?

Puffell supports people at their point of need by understanding what’s important to each of us and building behaviourally-focused activation. Puffell then uses both technology and peers to maintain that choice until it is habit formed.

We leverage the evidence and disciplines from behavioural science, cutting edge digital solutions and strategy from the 9 wider social determinants of health. We empower people by engaging the power of the 5 ways to wellbeing - connect, get active, be positive, learn new things and enjoy the power of giving.

Why we do this is simple. At the heart of everything we do, we believe in making better happen. We want to build a society that is resilient, well and HAPPY; we do this by making what we do simple to use, beautifully designed and user friendly. Want to join us?

Before beginning on our journey, we conducted a piece of insight that told us 7 things:

  1. People don’t understand/recognise their health and implications of poor health long term
  2. People want to do more for some themselves but don’t know where to start
  3. People feel ‘frustrated’ ‘abandoned’ –  health system misses key opportunities to engage with the right tools
  4. Want to be treated as the ‘whole person’
  5. A plea - use channels that we use
  6. Lack of trust in government
  7. They have great aspiration -  they want better, although struggle to define what better is for themselves, yet can almost always describe it for others important to them.

By building Puffell based on insight, we are able to collect meaningful hard and soft data for individual areas:

  1. Clinical measures - that evidence that a patient or citizen has made positive progress
  1. People-centred outcome measures (PCOMs and PROMs) - a relatively new concept which involves putting patients, people, and their families and carers at the heart of deciding which goals are most valuable for individuals with a range of health conditions, rather than clinicians deciding what is best

The data we are collecting is now evidencing outcomes, including: 

  1. Increased patient self care
  2. Better citizen self-management
  3. Reduced and redirected service demand
  4. Reduced health and social care costs

                                                              i.      via prevention and better managed conditions

 

We strive to demonstrate positive behaviour change; over the last 12 months we can demonstrate the following outcomes on Puffell.

The above image demonstrates the behaviour change we are starting to see - over an average of 127 days, an average of 4.3 less units were consumed every day; over an average of 158 days, there has been an average reduction in cigarettes smoked per day by 7.4 and over an average of 168 days, an average reduction of 3.1kg (that’s half a stone!) has been made.

Puffell doesn’t just offer lifestyle support; we offer long-term condition management. Combining this with the lifestyle support means we can support reducing cost out of the system.

Asthma and Viral Wheeze:

We recently launched a number of new spaces on Puffell for you all to use. The first of these was the launch of the asthma and viral wheeze space for adults and the asthma and viral wheeze space for children. Both of the spaces contain information, advice and tips about asthma and viral wheeze. It is there to help you manage your asthma and viral wheeze, allowing you to do more of what you want, when you want to do it.  

COPD:

The chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) deck was our second addition in the last 12 months, offering a space for anyone with COPD to manage their long-term condition and to help keep it under control.

Both the asthma and viral wheeze and COPD spaces offer the ability to create a digital diary, as well as allowing for cross reference with air pollution and humidity levels. This means that you can recognise and keep track of any trends or patterns.

 

CAMHS:

Our pilot for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) is now live in the Slough region. This space has been developed because young people have been waiting for long periods of time to access support. Puffell is designed to support young people whom can self manage, and we are working with the CAMHS team to refer any young people who need service-based intervention.

Health Checks:

We have also had a great opportunity through the development of our digital health checks space. We are in the process of launching a dedicated health checks space where you can get your heart age and then see the impact of your day-to-day life on your heart age. We have been involved in helping to map the national strategy for health checks with Public Health England (PHE), which Puffell will support by offering a digital platform for health checks.

Diabetes:

Our bespoke diabetes space is also in development and will be launched later this year. This is a great place for anyone with diabetes to track their condition, as well as writing down what their personal aspirations and goals to determine how best to achieve them.

To find out more about Puffell and how it can support you and your citizens, contact Richard Forshaw-Smith on 0151 647 4700 or at richard@icecreates.com

Puffell Update

August 1, 2016 12:07

Here at Puffell, we’ve recently celebrated our third birthday. Our third year began at the Health+Care conference and we were able to have so many fantastic conversations. People are becoming increasingly interested in the outcomes we can show to date, which is always exciting and encouraging.

Engagement:

We have reached some big milestones in the last 12 months. There are now more than 5,500 users active on Puffell, and this is increasing every single day. As the community gets larger, we are seeing more engagement across the groups.

Asthma and Viral Wheeze:

We recently launched a number of new spaces on Puffell for you all to use. The first of these was the launch of the asthma and viral wheeze space for adults and the asthma and viral wheeze space for children. Both of the spaces contain information, advice and tips about asthma and viral wheeze. It is there to help you manage your asthma and viral wheeze, allowing you to do more of what you want, when you want to do it.  

COPD:

The chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) deck was our second addition in the last 12 months, offering a space for anyone with COPD to manage their long-term condition and to help keep it under control.

Both the asthma and viral wheeze and COPD spaces offer the ability to create a digital diary, as well as along for cross reference with air pollution and humidity levels. This means that you can recognise and keep track of any trends or patterns.

CAMHS:

Our pilot for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) is now live in the Slough region. This space has been developed because young people have been waiting for long periods of time to access support. Puffell is designed to support young people whom can self manage and we are working with the CAMHS team to refer any young people who need service-based intervention.

Health Checks:

We have also had a great opportunity through the development of our digital health checks space. We are in the process of launching a dedicated health checks space where you can get your heart age and then see the impact of your day-to-day life on your heart age. We have been involved in helping to map the national strategy for health checks with Public Health England (PHE), which Puffell will support by offering a digital platform for Health Checks.

Diabetes:

Our bespoke diabetes space is also in development and will be launched later this year. This is a great place for anyone with diabetes to track their condition, as well as writing down what their personal aspirations and goals to determine how best to achieve them.

We strive to demonstrate positive behaviour change; over the last 12 months we can demonstrate positive behaviour change on Puffell.

The above image demonstrates the behaviour change we are starting to see - over an average of 127 days, an average of 4.3 less units were consumed every day; over an average of 158 days there has been an average reduction in cigarettes smoked per day by 7.4 and over an average of 168 days, an average reduction of 3.1kg (that’s half a stone!) has been made.

As you can see, it’s been a very busy year and we hope, with you, the next 12 months brings just as much excitement!

Why not invite your friends and join in the party. https://puffell.com/Pals/FindNewPals

To find out more about Puffell and how it can support you, contact Stephen Theobald on 0151 647 4700 or at stephen.theobald@icecreates,com

How can Puffell support your workforce?

July 21, 2016 10:06

Wellbeing links to engagement, and better staff engagement levels translate to better citizen experience and outcomes. There is a real need for the responsibility of keeping your workforce well and motivated to be owned and effectively implemented. Managers who show that they care about their employees' wellbeing are perceived as better managers - this is not a nicety, but an economical and managerial must.

We all want our workforce to be engaged and fully supported. What if we told you that Puffell is a free tool that can help to support healthy behaviours for you and your employees?

Puffell’s most recent deck, ‘Mood and Stress’, was officially released to coincide with this year’s Men’s Health Week (12-18 June). This deck was initially co-created with Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service as a space to equip their employees with the tools to self manage any daily stresses.

An increase in health and wellbeing levels for a workforce brings a reduction in sickness and absence, as well as increased levels of motivation.

In this space, support is signposted for issues such as bereavement, personal issues and environmental causes of stress.

The Mood and Stress deck also includes a self-assessment, which can be used to understand your levels of stress and happiness.

You are also able to create your own bespoke groups, so you have the opportunity to provide a safe space for your workforce to engage with one another.

This deck is just one part of how Puffell can help. From community support via groups and Puffell friends to the ability to set and track your personal goals, Puffell is designed to keep us all as well as we can be.

You can join in for free today at Puffell.com

To talk to us about how Puffell can help you, contact Richard Forshaw-Smith on 0845 5193 423 or at richard.forshaw@icecreates.com

Guess who's three!

June 14, 2016 16:15

What a year it's been for Puffell! Where does the time go? So much has happened in the last 12 months... where do I begin?

Just after celebrating our 2nd birthday, we kicked the year off at the Health+Care conference where we were able to have so many fantastic conversations. The want from people to do more for themselves is becoming, it seems, more and more front of mind.

In the last 12 months we have reached some big milestones. First off, there are now more than 5,500 users active on Puffell, and this is increasing every single day. Having a larger community, we are now seeing more engagement across the groups on Puffell. I would encourage everyone to ask questions or offer advice where you can; it can make such a difference.

Not only has our community grown, but we have also launched a number of new spaces on Puffell for you all to use. The first of these was the launch of the asthma and viral wheeze space for adults and the asthma and viral wheeze space for children. Both of the spaces contain information, advice and tips about asthma and viral wheeze. It is there to help you manage your asthma and viral wheeze so you can do more of what you want, when you want to do it.

The chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) deck was our second addition in the last 12 months, offering a space for anyone with COPD to manage their long-term condition and helps to keep it under control.

Both the asthma and viral wheeze and COPD spaces offer the ability to create a digital diary, as well as offering the ability to cross reference with air pollution and humidity levels to allow for any trends or patterns to be recognised.

Our pilot for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) is now live in the Slough region. This space has been developed because young people have been waiting for long periods of time to access support. This is an entirely new area for any digital platform to offer support in. Puffell is designed to support young people who can self manage, and we are working with the CAMHS team to refer any young people who need service based intervention.

In line with Mental Health Awareness Week we launched our mood and stress deck, which is a great way to keep track of things such as mood and the amount of sleep you get – both can have a big impact on how you feel!

Here at Puffell we have had a great opportunity through the development of our digital health checks space. We are going to be launching a dedicated Health Checks space where you can get your heart age and then see the impact of your day-to-day life on your heart age. As well as this, we have been involved in helping to map the national strategy for Health Checks with Public Health England (PHE), which Puffell will support - offering a digital platform for Health Checks.

As you can see it’s been a very busy year and we hope that, with you, the next 12 months brings just as much excitement!

Why not invite your friends and celebrate our third birthday with us tonight: https://puffell.com/Pals/FindNewPals

- Stephen

What are relationships and why are they important?

May 18, 2016 13:47

Relationships are an essential part of our lives; they are all around us in many different shapes and forms. But sometimes we forget how important they can be to our health and wellbeing.

Someone shared this video with me earlier this week, a brilliant video looking at the need to consider long-term health of our brains, which relationships pay a big part in - http://bigthink.com/videos/david-agus-on-long-term-brain-health?utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Facebook#link_time=1463269753

When I was starting to think about this, it really took me on a journey through my life and all of the different people who have come and gone, as well as the people I will connect with in the future.

I guess the best place for me to start is: what is a relationship? Now, on the face it seems simple, and if we look at a definition we will find it as the way in which two or more people or things are connected, or the state of being connected. So, in its absolute essence, a relationship is all about connections.

This year's Mental Health Awareness Week is about focusing us all back to the absolute core of what a relationship is, and why they are so important for all of us.

Relationships come in all shapes and sizes and almost all of them are built on trust and respect. Before I started writing this, I began talking about relationships with my friends, colleagues and family. What this really emphasised for me was that relationships are incredibly personal to every single person. Whilst it may seem like relationships are the same to everyone, they are not. The underlying themes may be similar, but we all judge what a good relationship is on an individual level.

 Just talking to a few people brought out a whole host of what a good relationship is to them, what matters and why that is important. Below is just a sample of what is important in a relationship: 

  • Closeness - having the ability to be open and honest
  • Trust and belief in someone
  • It’s two-way
  • Being invested in someone
  • Caring about their health, happiness and wellbeing
  • Totally loving someone
  • An investment by both parties
  • Selflessness, even when you want to be selfish

Why not take a minute today to think about what a relationship is to you, why that is important and what you are doing to help build and maintain healthy relationships. Do we need to do more to invest in being present with our friends and families - really listening and absorbing?

We have recently launched our Mood and Stress space on Puffell – you can see a video of this in action here (https://youtu.be/N84vHeLXErM) showing how it can help you. If you just need a friend, there is always a community on www.puffell.com where you can talk.

Contact me on 0151 647 4700 or at stephen.theobald@icecreates.com to find out more.

National No Smoking Day 2016

March 9, 2016 09:09

Today is national No Smoking Day; I was around for the first one all those years ago when it was treated as a mildly amusing joke.

The tobacco culture had a real grip on society, and being a non-smoker was quite an oddball thing -unless you were of the sporting variety. Health for health’s sake hadn’t taken off just yet, while the only nods to general fitness were “The Green Goddess” and “Mad Lizzie” on Breakfast TV - just for the girls, you understand.

There was no information about men’s health at all. 70% of men smoked, as well as “keeping fit” with football and rugby which was often followed by several pints and a pack of fags in the evening. Sporting events were routinely sponsored by tobacco giants. Meanwhile, women were targeted with chic cigarettes which were often slim and liquorice paper wrapped, giving a look of elegance when held in a certain way. This aesthetic was advertised everywhere from magazines, billboards and newspapers to TV and cinema advertising. Women’s sport still hadn’t caught on with the advertisers.

I was working in despatch at a very large factory employing vastly more women than men, mostly in repetitive routine manual work. It was the stuff that 1970s robots couldn’t do. Most of these women smoked and their lives revolved around the break bell, and of course the cigarette that accompanied the tea. Men would be under the same influence of time but their machines kept the clock ticking. You would be relieved to have a break as the machines kept going. It was repetitive, manual and controlled. It wasn’t a break - it was a fag break seen as part of the working day.

Thankfully, those days have gone and more often than not, we now tend to look to a healthier option. Smoking prevalence has plummeted since those far off tobacco filtered days. However, when we look at the data we find that routine manual workers still have the highest proportion of smokers today. Women have by and large quit or taken up the habit less quickly than men, but in the under 30s it is still stubbornly higher than average. Women in lower income employment and the unwaged are the higher proportion of that group.

We still have a long way to go and today it couldn’t be easier. Getting help to quit is only a matter of asking. The internet will give you all of the stop smoking services in your area. Stop4Life operates in workplaces, colleges and community venues, ensuring that the help you need is readily available in your busy lifestyle. Nicotine replacement therapy and all of the support you need comes from our advisors. With a solid support system, you are four times more likely to quit than going it alone. Our own Puffell.com will guide you and help with tracking your success. It is just a matter of taking the first step.

We have come a long way from the 70s and 80s; your smoking habit could well be history if you take one step more.

-        Les

For more information contact Les Jackson via les@icecreates.com or 0151 647 4700

Life at ICE

December 16, 2015 11:00

Those of you who are in regular contact with me will know that I have recently taken an exciting opportunity to explore a new chapter in my career. The plot remains similar as I continue with the passion I have for Health & Care, whilst growing the fascination for Organisational Development  - combining creative initiatives and innovation wherever possible.

I now find myself two months in and, at ICE Creates, my early experiences have been incredible! Allow me to shed some light on being the new guy.

First off is the fact I get to see this almost every day!

With my HQ situated on the banks of the River Mersey, I only have to lift my head above my monitor to take in the refreshing sights.

When you start at ICE, if the scenery doesn’t hit you first, the energy in the office definitely will. Like

a surge in a crowd at a rock gig, it will literally lift you and take you with it.

The team have been so welcoming and I have found it humbling to be accepted at pace into the family.

I use the word ‘family’ to its full, too. ICE has an impressive portfolio (Organisational/Leadership Development, Graphic Design, Digital, Marketing, Communications and Insights).

It can dip into craft valuable solutions, yet it does so within a relatively small, tight-knit group of people who take great pride in supporting each other.

Talking of support and family, what do you make of this year’s Christmas adverts? Good old JL set the ball in motion with ‘the man on the moon’, shortly followed by ‘Mog’ and all the others. What certainly seems to be a trend this time around is that most are trying to support a charity of some description. Now that’s very decent of them, but in my opinion, they have been slightly too whimsical in their approach to something that is in fact very real! Fortunately, many of my colleagues felt the same and we wanted to follow our thoughts up with actions.

With a relatively miniscule budget (certainly not £7million) and two mobile phones, we set about trying to show what people can achieve with small acts of kindness, closer to home, where we live. The outcome of this can be seen in the video below:

We loved every minute of making that short video, and hope others will feel compelled to complete similar acts of kindness? One friend told me she had taken a box of non-perishable food to her local sheltered home and they were delighted by such a simple yet thoughtful gesture.

So what of my first two months then? One thing is for sure thus far at ICE, no two days are the same. Opportunity is permanent and inspiration has no boundaries. I can’t sum up the excitement I have right now, but hopefully this blog is a clue. Perhaps I’ll touch base with you all in another two months, perhaps we could talk sooner…

Call me on 0151 647 4700 or Email simon.platt@icecreates.com

 

 

An Engaging ICE Team Week in Tweets

November 30, 2015 17:45

Scribe

 

Amazing feedback from local school children what helps to keep us happy and well?

BRILLIANT :) TODAY Share Your Insights

 

Showing His Passion for at the BRILLIANT

& at the FANTASTIC :)

Engage with The @ice_creates Team on Twitter :) #LiveWell & #MakeBetterHappen :)