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Brain in Hand: a professional digital support system

By Lesley Knowles, Brain In Hand Added 24th February, 2017

Brain in Hand (BiH) is a digital support solution that helps users become more independent and reduces costs for support-providing organisations, creating long-term financial sustainability.

The BiH system is a blend of digital tools and human support that allows organisations to reach more people and users to access help when they need it.

Brain in Hand benefits people with a range of difficulties including:

  • Managing anxiety/stress
  • Coping with change
  • Making decisions
  • Managing routines
  • Remembering things

It is often used in health and social care services - including autism services, mental health, community organisations, and residential settings - education, and employment.


Supporting over 6,500 people, and with over 20% of England’s local authorities (including 45% of London boroughs) commissioning Brain in Hand, the system has helped to transform lives across a range of settings. Funded by national student finance bodies, BiH supports thousands of students across almost every UK university. 

BiH increases confidence, helping people manage anxiety and achieve their goals; as users progress towards independence, services can more efficiently direct their resources to those who need them at the right time.

The BiH system combines three essential elements of technology and human support:

  1. Personal planning sessions with a specialist;
  2. An account for secure web and mobile software including self-management tools;
  3. A connection to extra human support when it’s needed. 

For organisations, Brain in Hand provides implementation support from a programme manager: a digital change expert who helps embed the system into existing pathways. Organisations receive access to data reports and - essential for ongoing commissioning decisions - support with evaluating outcomes.

Brain in Hand, which recently won an SBRI Healthcare award, is funded via several Government pathways: Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA); Access to Work; Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs). BiH is an approved Crown Commercial Service supplier.

If you would like to know how Brain in Hand could help support teams reduce costs and reach more people, you can contact 01392 247909 or

Brain in Hand will be able to put you in touch with teams who use the system, investigate commissioning options, and/or organise an engagement session with a BiH health and social care specialist.

Useful resources

BBC report on Cornwall Council's use of BiH

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