Collaborative effort will focus on increasing access to digital Public Health services

Wandera is proud to be part of a digital inclusion project to support families, vulnerable individuals, and older people across Kent and Medway counties.

Wandera will work with Kent County Council (KCC) and Medway Council to provide citizens with the digital tools they need to continue accessing vital public health services from home.

Wandera’s cloud-based solutions were selected to protect and control internet connectivity so that Kent and Medway council can roll out mobile technology for people who need it. This will enable continued and increased access to vital services for those who may not be digitally connected, for example, digital consultations with a health professional.

Wandera will be part of the Kent and Medway project along with Cantium Business Solutions, a specialist provider of IT, HR and finance solutions. The council will loan devices to people in need for three-month periods and Cantium will provide device configuration, distribution and support assistance. Each device Cantium provides will be preloaded with NHS approved apps, encouraging positive health and wellbeing behaviours in the local population. The devices will also be preloaded with Wandera’s threat defense and data policy services so users can successfully access online services without the risk of cybersecurity incidents, inappropriate internet usage, or expensive data overages.

The pilots will be evaluated to help inform the development of sustainable digital solutions for the future.

“We are thrilled to be working on this collaborative project to promote digital inclusion. Wandera’s technology makes mobile use safe and controllable, meeting the needs of programs that aim to connect citizens to the internet without exposing them to unnecessary risk,” says James Huck, Alliances Director at Wandera. “We are excited to see the pilot begin, and we’re ready to scale the program so more people can securely access the internet.”

Clair Bell, KCC Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health adds: “We are committed to ensuring the health, wellbeing and quality of life for our residents in Kent. It is more important than ever that everyone has online access to critical public health services when they need them. This pilot will ensure that those who do not currently use digital devices will receive training, support and online protection so they can share in the benefits of modern technology. I am delighted to be working with Wandera and Medway Council on this transformative project in support of our most vulnerable residents.”

Cllr David Brake, Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Adults’ Services, said: “We are pleased to be working with Wandera on this important pilot which will ensure residents can continue to access vital public health services using tablets and other digital devices. Having Wandera’s technology deployed on these loaned devices will ensure those who are given the devices will be protected from threats and blocked from accessing dangerous or inappropriate content online. The health and wellbeing of residents is our greatest priority and this project demonstrates our commitment to supporting Medway’s most vulnerable residents.”

Other agencies involved include Kent Community NHS Health Foundation Trust, Medway Community Healthcare, North East London NHS Foundation Trust and Citizens Online. commitment

According to the Office for National Statistics, in 2019 there were 4.8 million adults in the UK, who had either never used the internet or not used it in the last three months. A Kent and Medway digital inclusion survey in 2020 found that 34% of respondents had barriers to accessing digital services and 39% felt they lacked digital skills. The evidence gathered during this pilot will inform a longer-term approach and a business case for the future.