Kahnawake Shakotiia’takehnhas Community Services
Kahnawake Shakotiia’takehnhas Community Services (KSCS) is a First Nations not-for-profit organization based in the Kahnawake territory, near Montreal.
KSCS provides a wide variety of services to their community, including psychological services, addiction services, child and youth protection, elder services, and culturally-based traditional services. In 2017, KSCS chose Penelope to replace an aging legacy system that no longer met their needs, noting specifically Penelope’s configurability and “robust level of security” as determining factors in their decision.
Recently, Athena conducted a webinar with Blair Armstrong, Research and Systems Administrator at KSCS, who explained that Penelope has significantly eased the organization’s quarterly and annual reporting efforts, while empowering their staff to transition smoothly and securely to working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Using Penelope for remote care
Because Penelope is offered exclusively as a cloud-based system, KSCS staff have been able to securely access client files and provide care remotely, while continuing with their regular documentation and administrative work, said Armstrong. In particular, the ability to scan and attach documents to Penelope has been a huge help in allowing KSCS to continue to provide services during the pandemic, he said.
“The other nice thing that has been a godsend for us at this point is the attachments component of a service file. We’ve been using it by scanning in things like court orders, doctors’ orders,” he said. “Now we have the hard copy in our paper file, but we also have the electronic version that our staff still have access to at home, so that they can refer to the court order while they’re conversing with the client.”
When KSCS went live with Penelope in 2018, the organization purchased laptops with touchscreens for staff to use when doing home visits. Penelope can be accessed on mobile devices and includes electronic signature functionality, meaning clients can sign service plans and other documentation during a visit. Having the laptops on hand meant that transitioning to virtual care was even easier for KSCS staff.
“Our services have not been interrupted,” said Armstrong, later adding that, when social distancing measures were implemented, “We didn’t have to scramble and come up with plans. We just said, “Well, here’s the laptop, go home.”
Yearly reports at the push of a button
Prior to the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic, one of the major benefits enjoyed by KSCS since implementing Penelope is the significant reduction in reporting time. Kahnawake is required to submit quarterly and annual reports back to Health Canada and other funding sources and, in the past, this was a labour-intensive, manual process that involved dealing with spreadsheets and aggregating data for a solid month. Since implementing Penelope two years ago and engaging Athena’s Tailored Services team to produce custom reports, things have improved significantly, Armstrong said.
“In those two years, the level of information that we’re able to extract from Penelope has made my life a lot easier. I’m able to generate reports from the built-in reports that come with the program, but also through the Tailored Services at Athena, I’ve had them construct custom reports for me as well, where I just literally push a button and my report for the year is done. So there’s no more 60-hour weeks of me sitting here poring over these data sheets when I can just push a button and I’m finished,” he said.
Learn more about KSCS and their services at kscs.ca.
For more information on how Penelope can help your organization transition to remote care delivery, check out our Remote Care Offering
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