Headlines: May 30th, 2002

The trial phase of Leicestershire CareOnline has started with 20
volunteers testing the site. The aim of the service is to connect people to
information and services through the Internet and it is being developed for
people who need information, advice or help about social services, local
doctors, dentists, opticians, chemists, district housing as well as money
and benefits issues. It has been developed to help ensure that people can
get information they need without having to contact a number of different
agencies or council departments.

The service specifically focuses on helping older people, disabled people,
people with learning disabilities and people with mental ill health. It is
designed to assist those who may have difficulties in getting out of their
own homes, or travelling to where information and services are based or may encounter difficulties with communication.

The service is a joint development involving Leicestershire County Council,
Harborough District Council, the Melton, Rutland and Harborough Primary
Care Trust and Loughborough University.

The University Research School in Ergonomics and Human Factors is helping to make the site accessible and easy to use to overcome the difficulty that many people are not able to use standard computer equipment, such as keyboards and mice. Leicestershire and Rutland Society for the Blind are also providing advice.

The main pilot, with one hundred volunteers and additional shared access at
managed schemes and day centres, will take place between September 2002 and March 2003.

Link: http://www.leicscareonline.org.uk