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New smart solutions help older adults as well as care providers

New smart solutions help older adults as well as care providers
Amazon Alexa will be soon introduced to the Kisco Senior Living community to make life easier and enable automation for its residents, while helping community operators and staff members more efficiently manage the property.

The residents will be able to ask Alexa to control apartment lighting, access wellness data via Garmin devices, find out what's for lunch, chat with the front desk and sign up for events or outings.

The voice service was developed by K4Connect, a company that specializes in making smart solutions for the elderly or individuals with disabilities.

“The benefits of voice were immediately recognizable,” says Andy Kohlberg, CEO of Kisco Senior Living. “We see voice as a transformational technology and we are excited to deliver it to more and more of our amazing residents."

The Kisco community staff can use K4Connect’s platform for central administration, fleet management, enterprise analytics, and resident-centered support. They can also use the collected data to conduct analysis in order to provide better care and hospitality services.

Two other voice solutions tailor-made for senior living communities were unveiled earlier this month. Connected Living teamed up with Sodexo to offer the “Smart Living” program, which allows residents to ask Alexa for community information, check the menus and control smart home devices.

Cuida Health introduced LiSA, which runs on Amazon Echo and Google Home and lets users stay informed of community activities, send and receive voice messages, check local events and activities and get health advices.

Intelligent bed with sensors

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) recently developed a nighttime monitoring system for elderly with dementia, to track their respiration and activities in bed.

The system, called eNightLog, is designed for nursing homes and is expected to lessen the workload of healthcare personnel and improve their efficiency.

Three types of sensors are used to monitor an elder person’s physical state. Near infrared 3D sensor tracks the person’s positions and postures (lying down, sitting on bed or bedside, standing by the bed and leaving the bed) as well as caregivers’ visit. With the sensor, caregivers can be notified immediately when the patient falls or wonder away from the bed.

In addition, the impulse radar sensor can detect subtitle motions under the blanket. Even respiration rate can be detected so as to verify the person’s health condition and sleep quality. Last but not least, environmental sensor enables ambient temperature and lighting detection and control.

With the help of the sensors, signals detected beyond the normal range will trigger alarms and caregivers can take immediate actions.

The functions of eNightLog system will be extended to detect heart rate and body temperature, PolyU said. The system may be connected with different kinds of smart devices such as electronic diaper. It may also link with an ultrasound bladder volume detector to help caregivers take better care of their residents, especially in handling urinary incontinence.

The team behind eNightLog said it is exploring big data analysis to provide more information that can help with preventive healthcare.

App encourages engagement

Cloud-based software provider Brightree launched a new app that helps home medical equipment providers to better engage with patients.

The app, named Patient Hub, automates and simplifies how medical equipment providers connect with their patients. The app allows providers to automate simple, repetitive processes such as sending out appointment reminders and requesting insurance updates, among others.

Patients can initiate and complete tasks like updating account information, reordering supplies and making payments. They can also use their smart device to take and upload a picture of their insurance card or an item they want to order, and even troubleshoot broken equipment with vendors.

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