IT applications that support aging in place: seven categories of need. Mike Rosen Outgoing Director Rehabilitation Engineering Labs National Rehabilitation Hospital.
Rehabilitation Engineering Labs
National Rehabilitation Hospital
Disclaimer: This talk is about meeting the needs of elders by using technology. Therefore it will focus on technology. It is, however, the position of the speaker, his colleagues and family that IT must be applied in the context of an integrated consumer-centered system of health care and support for independent living.
Note: first three are about service delivery; last three are assistive; fourth one can be either depending on one’s model of health care.
Note 1: Engineering challenges vary dramatically across these examples; e.g. sensor integration and knowledge-based processing for automated fall detection.
Note 2: Automated solutions must take into account the costs of false positives and false negatives.
Note 1: This kind of instrumented monitoring may be felt as less intrusive than video.
Note 2: Wireless solutions are nearly essential.
Note 3: Either modular retro-fittable senor products (like X10) or “smart home” integrated systems*.For example:
*MIT, GA Tech, Intel, GE, Rochester
the premise… less intrusive than video.
“Wired Independence Square” at NRH
micro-switch less intrusive than video.unobtrusivesensors: so far just switches
Is the stove on?
magnetic proximity switch
Is the faucet running?
Is the cabinet open?
* less intrusive than video.MIT MANUS, Greg Burdea’s hand and foot systems, Dave Reinkensmeyer’s Java TherapyFor example:
Note 1: an engineering challenge is the processing of instrumentation signals to yield clinician-friendly results; OR educate clinicians to be instrumentation-friendly
Note 2: always-on streaming video monitoring may be viewed as Big Brother by some, Guardian Angel by others.
Note: this need is less intrusive than video.not limited to elders. This is universal assistive technology.For example:
*Elliot Cole, Institute for Cognitive Prosthetics
Note: Evidence is convincing that old age itself is not a barrier to use of sophisticated IT. The habits, expectations, experience and attitudes of this particular generation of elders can be.
New Yorker Cartoon by Gregory less intrusive than video.
Swissmemory USB by Victorinox