Tuesday, April 7, 2020 - Telenet and BASE will help COVID-19 patients in hospitals, young people with mental health problems and the elderly in care homes overcome feelings of isolation. Patients who are currently staying in improvised temporary care and triage spaces without a TV as a result of COVID-19 can now watch TV on their laptop, tablet or smartphone. Telenet is temporarily offering Yelo Play for free to all its business customers with multiple tv-sets in the care industry, i.e., more than 1,000 hospitals, elderly nursing homes and care institutions across Belgium. The telecommunications operator will also distribute 500 free smartphones with BASE SIM card and 500 extra SIM cards to mental health hospitals and youth care facilities, in a partnership with IT services provider Econocom.
Care institutions have been forced to expand their bed capacity to care for or isolate patients who are infected with coronavirus. In many cases, these spaces do not have the additional hospital and care facilities that we are accustomed to, i.e., a TV or a telephone.
That is why Telenet is temporarily offering Yelo Play for free to all its business customers with multiple tv-sets in the care industry, Patients can use this app to watch 80 channels on their laptop, smartphone or tablet, regardless of where they are being treated. A total of more than 1,000 Belgian care institutions will exceptionally be able to use this facility. Telenet Business will contact all of its involved customers with the necessary information about this special offer.
The telecommunications operator will also offer care institutions expanded, tailored TV content that is especially popular with older age groups. Residents and patients who watch analog TV can find the Belgian feel-good music channel MENT.TV on the mosaic channel. Digital viewers can also access the Play Time channel and Eclips TV. Play Time shows a varied selection of films and series for various target audiences. The schedule changes regularly. Eclips TV targets the 55+ audience.
“To curb the further spread of the virus, family visits are currently impossible or very limited in care institutions. Patients and residents may feel very isolated as a result. Telenet Business wants to provide an answer to the many questions of customers in the care industry, by temporarily stepping up its entertainment offering, with relaxing series and TV programmes.” Johan Devriendt, Sales Director Healthcare Telenet Business
Telenet is also taking the initiative to provide support to vulnerable children and teenagers in mental health hospitals and youth care facilities, by donating 500 smartphones with BASE SIM cards. It is doing this in a partnership with IT services provider Econocom, that will provide technical support for the initiative and will assure the distribution. Telenet will also make available 500 additional SIM data cards to the departments of care institutions that already have tablets and smartphones at their disposal, albeit without an Internet connection. They can then distribute these SIM cards to young people who need them.
“After consultation with care professionals, it became clear that vulnerable youngsters in care institutions are a target group where the need for means of digital communication is currently very high. Visits are also limited as much as possible in these institutions to curb the spread of the virus. That is why we wanted to help break through the isolation of these young people by making available smartphones to them.” Martine Tempels, Senior Vice-President Telenet Business
“At Econocom we believe in access to technology and the digital world for everyone. In these difficult times, technology can bring people together again and bring down barriers, which is we gladly contributed to this initiative. We have the technical expertise to implement this project together at an accelerated pace with Telenet Business.” Chantal De Vrieze, Managing Director Econocom Benelux
Telenet also recently launched its #samenerdoor platform (getting through this together platform), with plenty of creative tips on how to use technology to make it through the next few weeks. The platform explains how grandchildren and grandparents can easily set up a video chat, for example.