PlanHub is a new, customisable platform which allows disabled people to decided what information the system holds about them and uses Near Field Communication technology to control who can access it. The team has been busy raising awareness and getting it’s first NHS Trust on board.

It’s been an interesting few months, Simon and his wife, Gail booked a cheap, last minute holiday to Tenerife to try and get away from it all. It’s been a bit stressful lately so it was a chance to do nothing, but with nice weather. Simon used to be an aircraft engineer and so has flown a lot, but for the first time in his life he was on a flight with WiFi so he thought he’d catch up on some last minute bits while on the flight. He was just packing away before landing when he got an email…

”We are delighted to inform you that your idea has been selected to progress as a finalist to the next stage of the Inclusive Technology Prize.”

Well, that ended any hope of relaxing week, not least because any chance he got, he spent trying to talk to suppliers etc. Lots of thanks to Gail here because I am sure a lesser person would have thrown him in the volcano!

So Whats Been Happening..

Publicity, Publicity, Publicity! We have used our budget so far to fund the web improvements we needed. PlanHub itself is a great concept but we needed help to top up our skills. We’ve enlisted an up and coming web design company to rebuild the site while making it more user friendly. The current version requires far too much direct input to create a user site.

While this is happening, we’re doing the marketing. Already we’ve had one video viewed 1400 times on Facebook. As it turns out, good news stories are the key, especially if you can create your own.

Simon runs a small charity with some friends which puts on film and TV conventions that are totally accessible, we’ve managed to use some of the marketing budget to build a PlanHub based system to allow all the charity’s volunteers to be DBS checked and monitored. This in turn puts PlanHub as a sponsor of the events and lots of publicity! We are expecting 5000 at the next event and we already have a sign up system in place! Numbers are everything with this!

Signed Up: Our First NHS Trust..

So Matt uses a very specialist wheelchair system, and due to the complexity of it, he goes to Oxford University Hospital to have adaptations and repairs made to his seating. This raises all manner of issues in terms of time needed to have repairs assessed and made, normally requiring multiple trips to Oxford from Matt’s home in Peterborough. Sat there this week, we came up with a solution. We’ve created a Wheelchair Diary App for Matt and his support team to upload images and descriptions of any repairs needed, as they upload them, the Occupational Therapists in Oxford receive a notification and can make a judgement as to whether the repair needs a visit or, can wait until his next appointment. This is the first time we’ve had someone in an NHS trust sign up to use the system, and represents a major step for us!

Simon and Matt Howard are brothers, and the creators of PlanHub. PlanHub is the result of Matt getting lost while out in his hometown and being taken to a disabled toilet by someone trying to help him. Simon and Matt worked together to create a solution that would allow Matt to be helped in a more easy, and less demeaning way in future.