The new Compassionate Community Hub set up to provide support for people in Bath and North East Somerset (BaNES) during the Covid-19 pandemic has been working with local software provider RIVIAM Digital Care to transform the way Virgin Care, BaNES Council and local third sector organisations such as Citizens Advice Bath&NES and Bath MIND can co-ordinate a joint response.

Vulnerable residents in Bath&NES are the first to benefit from RIVIAM’s Wellbeing service which will soon be further enhanced following the company’s successful application for funding from Innovate UK.

People who are self-isolating, shielding or just in need of help can contact the hub, which is being managed by Virgin Care, BANES 3SG – which represents local third sector organisations – and Bath&NES Council. Professionals from different organisations are able to collaborate and co-ordinate the most appropriate support for people online quickly using RIVIAM. This new streamlined digital process replaces emails, spreadsheets and phone calls. Since April 2020, more than 2000 cases and 5000 calls for food parcels, medicines, advice and wellbeing have been managed by the hub on RIVIAM.

In June, RIVIAM was awarded funding by Innovate UK, the UK’s Innovation Agency, to extend its current Wellbeing platform to allow health, social care and third sector organisations using RIVIAM to set and share tasks and instant message each other about cases – all securely with strict security measures. Each organisation will continue to use its own IT system but RIVIAM acts as a secure ‘digital bridge’ to share information and collaborate with others.

Paul Targett, Managing Director, RIVIAM Digital Care, says:

“People only want to tell their story once and to receive a timely, personalised response from different agencies working together. Enabling health, social care and third sector organisations to co-ordinate care delivery with each other is more important than ever.”

“With RIVIAM Wellbeing, organisations in different sectors can collaborate as one team harnessing their collective power to deliver for people in need. The funding from Innovate UK allows us to enhance the technology we’re already providing in BaNES and develop a new way for health and care teams to communicate, improving services and making taxpayers money go further.”

James Carlin and Les Redwood at the Compassionate Community Hub

Les Redwood, CEO Citizens Advice BaNES, one of the organisations using RIVIAM says:

 “At Citizens Advice Bath&NES, we have been working with other charities and third sector organisations over the last year to bring together a partnership with Bath&NES Council, Virgin Care and the Clinical Commissioning Group to provide a more effective and efficient service to residents, patients and clients all across Bath&NES. The dreadful challenges of Covid-19 galvanised these partnership discussions into greater action and the Compassionate Community Hub was born. Ten organisations were quickly and effectively working together to provide an emergency response to Covid-19.”

“The ‘glue’ that pulled all this together was the revolutionary technology platform that was created and delivered to support this crucial work – RIVIAM’s Wellbeing service. This, without doubt has enabled the initiative to become a huge, unique, nationwide success story, and to deliver a far more effective and efficient solution for the Local Authority, lead healthcare provider and local third sector partners.”

James Carlin, Director, 3SG, says:

“RIVIAM has been key to the success of the Compassionate Community Hub. For the first time, we have been able to work collaboratively on one platform without the need for phone calls or emails. This makes for more accurate partnership working and a better service for residents in all parts of Bath and North East Somerset.”


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