Substantial Return On Investment (ROI) for desuto users

An illustration of potential savings

Although the primary aim of the desuto decision support tools is to improve the standard of decision making under the Mental Capacity Act, the time and cost savings and potential ROI that could result from the automatic report writing feature are of particular interest to customers when presenting a business case to decision makers.

For the past two months Desuto Ltd has been running a survey of staff confidence in implementing the Mental Capacity Act. We currently have baseline results for nurses, registered care home managers and senior healthcare assistants working across 12 care provider services in the Southwest.

One of the survey questions concerns the amount of time that staff estimate it would take them to complete a written report of a mental capacity assessment. As you will see the results are very illuminating.

See Chart 1.


Chart 1 shows that across the 12 care providers 3% estimated it would take them up to 30 minutes to write a report, 28% estimated it would take them up to 60 minutes, 24% estimated it would take them up to 90 minutes and 14% estimated it would take them more than 120 minutes. A rather worrying 31% of staff said they would not know how to write up a report of a Mental Capacity Assessment.

If we exclude those staff that don’t know how to write a report, we can calculate that the average time a staff member would take to write a capacity report is 81 minutes (1hr 21minutes). The average hourly rate for care home staff in the UK involved in making decisions and writing reports is estimated to be approximately £10.66 per hour*. Therefore, the average cost of each report is £14.39.

A 50 bedded care home at 90% occupancy is likely to complete a minimum of 108 capacity assessment reports per year** for residents who lack capacity. On this basis, completing capacity assessment reports will cost the average home £1,554 per year.

Using the desuto MCA tool, a capacity assessment report takes no more than 10 minutes. The average cost of each report is £1.77 and the annual cost of 108 reports £191 representing an overall saving of £1,363.   

We calculate that for a single care home provider the tools would have paid for themselves as soon as 20 MCA reports have been completed***. 

Use of the tools is likely to result in lower paid staff becoming more proficient at completing assessments and reports which will lead to a further reduction in the unit cost of assessments over time. 

*The average hourly rate is based on a mean average of UK pay rates for a registered nurse, care home manager and senior healthcare assistant. Source 2017  .

**Based on numbers of reports completed by current users.

***Calculation based on the use of the MCA tool alone. Does not include the additional time savings achieved for Best Interest decisions and DoLS applications available with the standard subscription.