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Technology-Enabled Care Solutions for Senior Independence

Technology-Enabled Care Solutions for Senior Independence

Allowing senior citizens to remain in their home as long as possible by offering technology based solutions to offer a non-invasive proactive approach to deteriorating mental and health issues.

Project milestone

In Development

Idea Complete
Prototype Complete
In Development
Deployed
Commercialized

Impact statement

Often times, as individual ages, it becomes increasingly difficult to remain safe and independent at home, leading many older adults and their families with the more expensive and less desirable options of Assisted Living or Nursing Home care. With the increase demographic of older adults as baby boomers age, the economics of senior health care becomes a significant social issue. It is increasingly important that we find new, cost effective, customer friendly approaches to the delivery of care allowing older adults the option of aging in place in their own home. To assist in solving this problem, We are proposing the expansion of the Healthsense sensor technology to be used in private homes in the greater Red Wing area, thus providing an economical means by which seniors can remain in the home setting. This technology has been used, with great result in our Deer Crest assisted living community in Red Wing and we feel that its application in the private home will produce similar results. The beauty of sensor technology is that the end user has to do very little to make the system work. Healthsense motion sensor devices would be installed in the home with data being transmitted through the central network to our Deer Crest Assisted Living community. Staff members at Deer Crest would monitor data and be alerted by the system should there be an issue of concern in the home. A base line of normal activity in the household will be established, alerting the first responder when there is a significant deviation from base line. Providing real time data, this technology allows for early intervention thus minimizing or preventing significant safety issues, as well as, unnecessary hospitalizations, health care services and reduced 911 calls. The individual user and their family has the peace of mind knowing that this system is in place ready to respond when necessary. In our current use of the system we have been able to proactively predict the onset of urinary tract infections, fluid retention and other health status changes. Even identifying these subtle changes a day or two earlier than normal can have a significant impact on the older adults long term health status. The system is also design allowing family members the ability to monitor activities in the home the as well. This is particularly helpful in situations where family are a distance away and cannot regularly visit or check in on their loved one. This program would supplement or “enable” hands on services which would be provided by local home care staff. The technology as such then becomes an important information source for home care delivery to be focused and most effective to the needs of the customer. Often times seniors are poor reporters of their medical conditions, so the technology helps to fill that gap, empowering the health care team to properly manage the individual care plan.