Smart home technology has prepared for the baby boomer generations expectation to overwhelm the healthcare industry. Meanwhile there is a growing trend for the elderly to experiment with alternative care offerings due to the nation’s shortage of physicians and increase in medical costs. Home-based care models have really started to gain popularity from healthcare providers along with sparking interest in senior citizens.
Smart home devices like Amazon’s Alexa are already doing extremely well with consumers. This proven success has started a domino effect in having healthcare companies starting to experiment with smart home tech. Smart home’s are houses equipped with monitors and sensors controlled by software to improve residence living experience. Before getting into healthcare, smart home technology already provided services like entertainment, security and general housekeeping.
Smart home tech will give the elderly full control of their healthcare status while maintaining the independence of staying in their own home. This automation technology used in homes to support senior citizens or disabled people is known as assistive domotics. Not only does assistive domotics provide healthcare services but can also help out with handling daily tasks that could be difficult for the elderly or disabled.
Assistive Domotics Services For Elderly Care
- Home Automation. By placing sensors on devices caregivers can be alerted if appliances are left on or doors are left open and unlocked. Lights in rooms can be turned on and off automatically at night when someone enters or leaves.
- Monitoring Systems. Sensors placed in beds and chairs can detect a person vitals and sleeping patterns. Video cameras can be placed around the house for recording human activity for health concerns as well as security and safety. Other monitoring devices can send alerts when people are performing unusual movements like wandering or no movement at all. Automated panic buttons contact emergency services when abnormal activity is detected.
- Administer Medication. Memory problems are very common for aging people. Not only does smart home technology provide reminders it also allows for automation of delivering medication and locking medicine cabinets. This combined with remote monitoring and the ability to provide emergency assistance can definitely save a person’s life.
- Digital Healthcare. Track vital signs with telematic health monitoring tools in the home and automatically send results to electronic health records. Remote virtual care capabilities allows patients to have doctors appointments over the phone, video or even secure messaging. Health records can be updated and accessed by all medical practitioners to increase coordination of healthcare services.
Using smart home technology to care for the elderly has already proven to be useful and very beneficial. It is clear that assistive domotics will become an option to assisted living and nursing homes. It is proven that being forced to relocate to a retirement home can have detrimental effects on an elderly person’s mental and physical health. Being able to stay home definitely improves quality of life and at the same time reduces the costs of healthcare.
All of the advances in smart home medical have allowed for the elderly to live longer and more enjoyable lives in the comfort of their own house. With the steady advancement in technology and thousands of new startups everyday the limits are endless on how smart home healthcare will look in the future.