Tech, approaches for caregiving at a distance falling behind

[grow_thumb image=”” thumb_width=”175″ /]There’s plenty of telehealth systems and apps that remind older adults of their meds, appointments and take their vital signs–but where are the ones that take care of the reality of ‘aging in place’: the loneliness of the man or woman who lives alone, how that person can communicate with family with their own lives 50 or 2,000 miles away, how family members can better oversee or coordinate her care? The problem hasn’t changed when first addressed over a decade ago by the earliest telecare systems. The technology, while more abundant, is largely uncoordinated, putting the burden on the caregiver. Laurie Orlov points out that ‘finding care is not the problem’ but that the care is at extremes: either too light (daily non-medical assistance) or a move to assisted living housing (average move-in now 80+). No company has truly organized a larger solution that objectively helps with the vast middle. Caregiving technology needs a version 2.0 upgrade And if you believe that a CCRC (continuing care retirement community) offers a more ideal, transitionally integrated solution–if you can afford it–this article and comments following will disabuse you of that notion. The CCRC concept is an ageist nightmare — and it’s not just the name

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  1. When we were designing MyHomeReach we modelled the system on that of a functioning community and how that community can monitor and manage (safeguard) itself through everyday activities. At HealthComms we are deploying SAAS based solutions to individuals with dispersed care network which includes Care Organization, Family etc. A key function is one of ease of communication. This can include carer notes, carer or self assessments of activities of daily living. Medication and Standard appointment reminders are presented visually and verbally to the user. Alerts are raised to a care organization based on care recipient interaction.