Milo, a robotic cat, is a hit with residents at the Brookdale Senior Living Community in Danvers, Mass. And while a robotic cat isn't the most high-tech device around, but it may be a sign of things to come in tech for elder care.⠀
Entrepreneurs and researchers are rushing to develop new technologies to support the fast-growing population of seniors — and those who care for them. Ideas include VR, apps, and even smart homes for tracking health. ⠀
Much of the new technology for seniors is still being tested and developed, and engineering and ethical hurdles remain. Safeguarding privacy when sharing personal and medical data is one concern. Another is who should actually be in control of the technology: seniors or their caregivers. (Photos: Robin Lubbock/WBUR)⠀
Read this story and our other Future Of Work coverage, which looks at the impact of trends in tech, automation, and the gig economy at wbur.org/future-of-work. ⠀
Here goes week no. 2 of my immersive experience into elder care in Singapore. It has been extraordinary to be here amongst our elders, and amongst professionals who care for them on our behalf.
This morning? The lady in the bed opposite me who has both dementia and has had a stroke previously but is semi-cognitive, and only speaks Hainanese so often has no one to talk to as a result, suddenly said 'good morning' to the nurses in English. First time she has ever replied despite it being said daily. It's a connection.
The nurses are thrilled. Me too. #forthesilverclouds#eldercare#progress
Take charge of your health
Most of our health is not controlled by the health care system but by our own actions, our environment, our genes, and social factors. In addition, physicians are not perfect; medical errors do happen. The more patients participate in their own health care, the more satisfied they tend to be with the care they receive.
Tips: Think about the ways that your health can improve by changing your lifestyle, and make those changes. You are your own best advocate. Contact your primary care practitioner for an annual physical or whenever you have a concern about your health, and go to those appointments prepared. Bring a list of your current prescription and non-prescription medications, including herbal supplements; keep a list of your health concerns; and, most importantly, ask questions! .
“Thank you! Just wanted to let you know that my mom went to the community yesterday to visit & had her assessment at the same time. She loved the facility and they placed her at Level 2 Care. I think I mentioned to you that my mother is really “on the ball” with no dementia, just self-conscious about her need for oxygen. They made her feel very comfortable and she was thrilled with “the bistro” where she can do down and get coffee and snacks. It is nice to hear her get excited and look forward to something for once. The doctor is filling out her paperwork tomorrow. Our goal is to move my mom in on Friday. Thank you so much for your referral. I can’t tell you how much you’ve helped my family. It would have taken us forever to research and tour facilities, yet your first referral was right on target. It is just what she needs and affordable for us. We couldn't be happier!” - Judy - www.adultcareadvisors.com