COVID-19

NHS deploys Rainbird’s intelligent automation technology to relieve COVID-19 pressure

NHS Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals
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NHS deploys Rainbird’s intelligent automation technology to limit unnecessary self-isolation by staff

Rainbird has partnered with the NHS, which is using our rapid deployment programme to build an online, interactive tool that provides tailored advice on appropriate self-isolation measures to NHS staff. 

The tool, which was developed to address the staff resourcing challenges currently faced by the NHS, can be updated within minutes to reflect shifts in national guidance, and personalised to NHS organisations. This partnership follows an open letter from the Rainbird CEO offering its technology free of charge to those supporting vulnerable individuals during this time.

The tool, which is currently being used by the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals Foundation Trust (NNUH), will help hospital services to manage their staff resourcing challenges. It will also provide appropriate next steps to those with COVID-19 symptoms by combining NHS and government guidance. The tool is also being extended to give advice on which workers to test for COVID-19.

The tool requires staff members to enter identification credentials, before being taken through a series of questions on the presence of symptoms and how long they and other members of their household have experienced them. Staff are instantly provided with a PDF document that can be presented to their supervisor and explains guidance created specifically for that member of staff.

Dr Robert Hardman, Consultant in Occupational Medicine at NNUH, said: “This is a vital tool for a number of reasons – not only does it help to protect front-line staff and their colleagues in this time of great need, it will also significantly reduce pressure on occupational health services by giving staff another option for support if they develop symptoms.”

He continued: “Unfortunately, there is still some confusion around how the guidelines on self-isolation apply to NHS workers, which could lead to preventable infection and added strain on our service by longer than needed isolation. This resource will remove that uncertainty and allow staff to inform their line manager they will be absent in one seamless process.”

James Duez, CEO of Rainbird, commented: “We are fully committed, at an individual and organisational level, to doing all we can to support those combatting this global outbreak. Especially our NHS. Our flexible technology can be quickly adapted to suit the nuanced and complex individual circumstances of NHS workers, effectively turning what would be a software development task to a clinical one and markedly streamlining operations.”

“Already, we are planning other forms of support, including a comprehensive risk assessment for staff, taking into account pre-existing conditions, their ability to wear PPE and other factors. We see immense potential for this tool, something reinforced by approaches Rainbird has had from other organisations seeking to push this technology to other countries, including those within Africa where the disease and preparedness is tracking some weeks behind the UK.”

A public version of the NHS tool is available now via this link.

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Rainbird and EY support RCA students to develop AI banking apps that help vulnerable customers

The Royal College of Art
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Rainbird, the intelligent automation platform, and global consultancy Ernst & Young (EY), have collaborated with the Royal College of Art (RCA) to offer industry knowledge and expertise to students enrolled on the RCA Service Design Programme course. The aim of the course is for the students to develop cutting-edge AI-enabled apps that will help vulnerable banking customers better manage their finances and navigate the complex financial services industry. With an expected increase in the number of people classified as a ‘vulnerable customer’, following the severe economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, there has never been a more pressing time to help those struggling to navigate the financial services landscape. 

The students conducted face-to-face interviews with people categorised as vulnerable, to ensure a human-centred approach to the AI solutions they created. The apps developed by the groups demonstrate there is far more to be done to protect vulnerable people, when it comes to banking. They also covered a wide range of vulnerability use cases and value propositions, including:

  • A preventive service that applies consumer gamification and incentives to nudge users towards positive behavioural changes. The service is designed to use Rainbird to generate a “wellbeing score” that helps banks recognise those who need extra support. 
  • A service aimed at preventing financial abuse by improving the joint account service for couples. One in five adults is a victim of financial abuse (most of these being women). The service is designed to use Rainbird to identify potentially vulnerable people by analysing suspicious transaction patterns, unusual behaviour and words used in help centres. 
  • A service designed to boost financial literacy among young people, whom are highly represented among vulnerable customers. The service would use Rainbird to identify the potentially vulnerable, based on multifactorial signs of low resilience (e.g. low savings or over-indebtedness), and deliver automated, contextual advice.

James Loft, COO at Rainbird, said, “As banks are increasingly tantamount to online businesses, the nuanced and careful consideration of a customer’s circumstances should be incorporated within technologies used to assess vulnerability. The complex factors that influence a bank’s assessment of transient or compounding vulnerability can be reliably handled only by technology with human knowledge at its core.”

The students presented their proposed apps to a distinguished panel and detailed the resources needed to bring their ideas to life, a clear timeline and implementation budgets. 

The proposed solutions align with guidelines set by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) on how to assist vulnerable people, and comply with GDPR.

Clive Grinyer, Head of Service Design at RCA: “At the RCA Service Design course, we apply design approaches and methodologies to some of the biggest problems facing society and businesses. The opportunity to work with Rainbird, to develop new ways of identifying and helping people in vulnerable circumstances, fits perfectly that ethos. Our students have the opportunity to experiment and shape how AI and financial services can create real solutions to these problems.”

Chris Withers, Head of AI and Advanced Analytics, Financial Services at EY: “Improving outcomes for society’s most vulnerable citizens is an issue that will be even more urgent as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. There are no simple solutions to improve a person’s life situation or break a cycle of financial abuse or neglect, but there are defining moments where data, information and technology can come together to provide benefits to those people who are more vulnerable at any given point in time. The RCA students have designed solutions which demonstrate the art of the possible for all of us who participate in the financial services sector.”

You can download below our report on vulnerability in banking.

Recognising and supporting vulnerable customers in banking
In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, the number of vulnerable people in every society has skyrocketed. This comprehensive ebook explains the definition of vulnerability and its different forms, why it's unwise for banks and financial institutions to ignore vulnerable customers, and why intelligent decision automation is the game changer we all need.

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Letter from the CEO: Access Rainbird for Free to Tackle COVID-19 Devastation

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Dear friends and partners

We call on the world to utilise our technology free of charge to help others in the face of COVID-19

I invite you to use Rainbird’s intelligent automation technology to support our communities at this time of international crisis. It is already relied upon by some of the largest global organisations to deliver critical services.

This pandemic is resulting in disruption on a scale that is unprecedented in peacetime. For some organisations, demand for services is collapsing while, for others, it is increasing exponentially – not least of all within our healthcare services. Either scenario presents a massive challenge, especially given this crisis has also triggered a wholesale displacement of our people.

Like you, I feel the challenge of balancing my responsibilities to my family, my colleagues and my community. While we are all feeling the pain of disruption, many of us are also facing new financial realities or losing our jobs.

Technology is probably more critical right now than at any other moment in history. We applaud and watch with anticipation as data scientists predict virus inflection points and scientists advance hopes for a vaccine.

While they do their critical work, technology companies like Rainbird can and must do more. We need to take action, not just publish rhetoric. Our businesses, staff and communities need support. They need answers to their biggest questions; “Should I go to hospital?” “Is there financial support for my family?” “How can I support my employees?”

We work with experts every day, and each wishes they could support all of those who need their help; every worried patient, every struggling family, every remote worker.

There is a technology that makes this possible, and it would be irresponsible if we didn’t make it available for free where it can be wielded for the greater good.

We have an established, truly intelligent technology that can automate complex decisions at scale and explain its rationale at each turn; whether that be a provisional clinical diagnosis, critical financial advice or essential technical support.

Intelligent automation delivers solutions at a scale that cannot be achieved by humans alone. This is true at any time but especially now. Quite simply, it solves a problem of scale that cannot be solved any other way.

We are already working with partners to put our collective energies into making a difference. Before COVID-19, we were working with Ernst Young and the Royal College of Art to support vulnerable people in financial services. Now, we’re developing further ways to help.

We want you to join us because collectively we can achieve so much. That’s why we’re offering our technology to you, so your best expertise can be amplified to make a difference.

How will you scale your knowledge to make a difference to millions of people?

Simply complete the short form on this page and we’ll be in touch.

Stay healthy

James Duez
CEO
Rainbird Technologies

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