Tiina Karttunen, Project Manager of the City of Tampere, emphasizes that the purpose of activity monitoring is to fill the gap in time, which will inevitably arise between visits of the home care staff.
“Nurses and relatives of the elderly have wished for a camcorder to follow the wellbeing of a senior. In practice, however, it is not possible to install a camera”, she says.
Activity monitoring not only reduces concern but also provides useful information on the condition of older people and the state of their health.
Karttunen is a project manager at the Ratko tuate -project in Tampere (Solutions for Supported Housing at Home). This is part of a wider TuTunKo -project (Sense of security at Home) involving VTT, the University of Oulu, the cities of Tampere and Oulu, South Karelia Social and Health Care District (Eksote) and nine companies – among them 9Solutions.
Elderly activity monitoring has been piloted and developed in home care facility of Tampere Pappilanpuisto Service Centre. Approximately ten homes are equipped with sensors, which allows to monitor and to record behavior of the residents. The sensors measure the mobility of the elderly, the opening of the front door and the use of refrigerator and the restroom. The nurses can view the data collected from each customer.
“This information already tells quite a lot – if the elderly moves at home at night instead of sleeping, whether for some reason he often glimpses out through his front door, whether he takes food from the refrigerator and goes to the restroom too often or too rarely. With this information a nurse can conclude the wellbeing of the elderly and see the changes in it”, says Project Manager Karttunen.
The actual project ends at the end of June this year, but the development of activity monitoring and the gathering of experiences continue. Therefore, sensors are not yet collected from the homes of the elderly.
According to Tiina Karttunen, nurses of the Pappilanpuisto have been positively optimistic for their clients’ activity monitoring.
“Nurses see the opportunities that this technology offers”, she says.
Karttunen is convinced that the significance of different technological solutions in the elderly care is constantly increasing. However, it is important for nursing staff and clients that the use of solutions is easy and that they are genuinely useful. Different solutions must also be seamlessly matched.
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