a high-tech way to
age in place
Home monitoring enhances seniors’ independence and
caregivers’ peace of mind.
ccording to the U.S. Census Bureau,
more than 77 million boomers
reside in the U.S. and by 2030, this
demographic will represent an
estimated 20 percent of the population.
This means each day for the next 19 years,
more than 10,000 baby boomers will turn
65. Studies show the vast majority of seniors
wish to remain in their homes as they age,
and about 85 percent of those “aging in
place” will require some sort of in-home
care from family, friends or home health
services. Fortunately, numerous companies
are working to make staying connected
with seniors easier with a variety of home
monitoring systems.
Several companies are investing significant research and development funds with
the goal of creating affordable technology
that will revolutionize how people age in
their homes. Much of this new technology
involves wireless devices that communicate
with a main touch screen monitor. The components have been specifically designed with
seniors in mind, with large text and simple
navigation. Installation is in most cases no
more complex than setting up a desktop
computer. A half-hour training session
with the dealer representative is usually
sufficient, and maintenance is minimal.
Many of these systems come with health
monitoring equipment like a weight scale,
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pulse oximeter, glucometer and blood
pressure cuff. Each accessory is designed to
work with the main unit to read and record
health data, which can be stored for access
by client-approved family and medical professionals through a web browser, or sent
to contacts of the client’s choosing. Some
systems also incorporate wireless sensors
throughout the home to monitor movement, temperature and lighting.
What’s more, these systems often offer
entertainment options and photo and video
sharing functions, which not only allow
families to monitor the health and wellbeing of their loved ones, but can also
enrich their relationships.
© Dean Mitchell |
Another plus is that the technology is
very cost effective when compared with the
expense of a long-term care facility. The
average monthly cost for an independent
living center is about $3,500 to $5,000,
while the average cost of a home monitoring system is generally about $1,000 down
and $200 per month. A family can save
more than $40,000 the first year alone by
choosing home monitoring.
The bottom line when it comes to advances
in home monitoring: It’s a win-win for
everybody involved in a senior’s life. The
senior gets to continue to live independently, and their caregivers get peace of mind,
all in an easy-to-use, affordable package.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Mark Koopmans is the chief
technology officer and co-founder of Added
Care Systems. Koopmans has placed an
emphasis in his career on understanding and
implementing better ways for users to interact with applications and communication
mediums. For more information, visit www.
All HCPCS codes subject to change.
Added Care Assistant is an interactive aging-in-place appliance. The user interface consists of a touch screen KIOSK-type
computer, which has no keyboard or mouse—all user functions are accessible through an interface, which features large
buttons utilizing both icons and text. Added Care Services’ proprietary software allows the ACA to wirelessly attach to and
communicate with wellness devices such as blood pressure monitors, scales, glucose monitors and pulse oximeters, and
home automation devices such as motion sensors, pressure mats, light controllers and temperature sensors. The ACA also
allows family members and loved ones to give the user access to family videos on YouTube, and family pictures and
albums on Google’s Picassa web albums.
Added Care Services, 888-499-1129,
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Developed jointly by telecommunications and health care
professionals, the Alert Sentry System package consists of
equipment that is ready to use and works with an existing
telephone line. The recently introduced Enhanced Pendant
enables clients to speak directly through the pendant to
Alert Sentry’s call center. This allows the call center to
assess the situation and dispatch the proper assistance.
Alert Sentry also now offers Mobile 911, a simple cell
phone that is designed for emergencies only. Alert Sentry
is waiving the authorized dealer fees for MedTrade Fall
2011 attendees. Visit booth 1952 during the show.
Alert Sentry Systems, 877-253-7899,
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SilverCare allows users to manage their health and safety around the house without
monthly payments or service contracts. Alert Aids include two-way communication
via the watch or pendant; priority help calling, which allows the user to talk with a
loved one or neighbor during an emergency; and dedicated 911. Fall Prevention Aids
include remote call-answering, which allows users to answer the phone with the watch
or pendant and talk directly through the base console, and SilverLite,an optional
accessory which lets the user to turn lights on and off wirelessly. Safety and Well-Being
Aids include medication and appointment reminders; programmable ICE (In Case of
Emergency) information; and Home and Away notification.
SilverPlus, 877-745-8701,
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LogicMark FreedomAlert provides two-way voice communication through the pendant, from anywhere in and around
the home. FreedomAlert also calls up to four numbers of your choice—family, friends, even 911 if no one answers from
your list of contacts. Because you are calling family members or 911, there are no monthly fees. The Emergency Wall
Communicator is like PERS on steroids. This is the first wireless and battery powered two-way voice communicator for a
Personal Emergency Response System (PERS). Simply attach the Emergency Wall Communicator to the wall anywhere in
your home and you have full way voice communication to the central station of your choice. The waterproof unit can even
be located in the shower, where many accidents happen.
LogicMark, 800-519-2419,
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All HCPCS codes subject to change.
The GrandCare System is connected to any dedicated Internet connection and communicates with “wireless” sensors
throughout the residence. Designated caregivers can log into the GrandCare website to send communications to their
loved one, view activity and tele-wellness sensor information and customize the automatic caregiver alerts. A caregiver
may choose to receive a call, e-mail or text message if specified conditions occur (medication noncompliance, unusual
activity, door opens at unusual time, etc). GrandCare also incorporates socialization, entertainment and communication
elements. Family can send pictures, messages, e-mails, reminders, calendar appointments, voice messages, family videos,
music and more to the GrandCare System. The loved one may also play games, engage in brain benders, listen to music,
watch old film clips, view news and weather reports and more.
GrandCare Systems LLC, 262-338-6147,
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Smart Caregiver’s patented CordLess Fall/Mobility Monitoring System helps to keep residents safe with pressure-sensing
chair pads, bed pads and floor mats that signal a CordLess Monitor, Central Monitor or Pager, alerting caregivers that
someone in their care may need assistance. Unique among fall monitoring products, Smart’s CordLess System uses wireless
technology to eliminate cords between the sensors and the monitors. Eliminating the cord allows caregivers to reduce bedside alarm noise because the mobility monitor may be placed outside of the resident’s room where caregivers can see and
hear it better. And with CordLess, the tripping and entanglement hazards presented by conventional cords are eliminated.
Smart Caregiver Corporation, 800-650-3637,
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New from
The Freelift Custom Stairlift is a
single rail curved system from the
lift company with over 125 years
of industry experience.
An available photo survey system
means measuring is stress-free and
the multiple track, seat and power
options can be designed, built and
delivered in market leading times for
almost any client’s needs.
With its 2 year warranty and long list
of standard features the Freelift Custom
Lift offers an impressive balance of style,
convenience and safety.
• Power swivel and power hinge options
• 3 standard rail colors – custom colors available
• 70 degree park option for space saving
• 45 degree seat for narrow staircases
• Key switch to prevent unauthorized use
Call 866-276-5438 for further information
or email [email protected]
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RF Technologies, a leading provider of radio frequency identification monitoring systems and healthcare security solutions,
announces new Smart ID location detection technology. The Code Alert Quick Response Plus with Smart ID is an economical
solution that identifies a resident’s location upon their call, with detail down to a common or general living area. This
enables caregivers to respond to calls faster and provides a greater sense of security for the residents of a community and
their families. The system is also faster and easier to install than other systems that require extensive mapping of a facility.
The Quick Response Plus solution features call pendants, which are available as a necklace, belt clip or wristband; easy-touse touch screen monitor software, Quick Look™ LED displays, smoke detector integration and reporting capabilities.
RF Technologies, 800-669-9946 x3,
Circle 168 on Product Card
This innovative product works with an existing phone line, allowing users to program up to four phone numbers to call with a
single push of a button. A loved one or patient simply wears a pendant to provide instant access to help whenever it’s needed.
Unlike with simple alert systems, use the pendant to automatically dial the preset numbers, and then talk with the person on
the other end. If no one answers, 911 can be automatically dialed. Responsable is great for making people feel comfortable
that help is always available, even if it is not a “911 emergency.” This unit includes one pendant and a base station that
connects to a standard telephone. Also available: Wall Mount Unit, Additional Pendants and Switch Accessible Wall Mount Unit.
HCPCS: A9280
AbleNet, 800-322-0956,
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All HCPCS codes subject to change.
The SimplyHome System is a sophisticated in-home monitoring system to
track and manage various items and events within a home. Various discrete
technologies from medication access tracking to a stove sensor work together
to help notify family members and caregivers of potential issues based on
choices and activities within the home. Additionally, every event that happens
in the home is tracked on your own secure website. Using the reporting tools
in the website, you can quickly identify changing behaviors or trends.
Finally, you can incorporate the EMT Call Center with the system to help
respond to any need. The EMTs are available to respond to a missed
medication access, an in-home emergency and every need in between.
SimplyHome, 877-684-3581,
Circle 164 on Product Card
The Direct Link Personal Emergency Response
System is monitored 24 hours a day, 365 days
a year. For help, simply press the small, wireless
button worn as a pendant or wristband. The
Care Center staff will respond promptly and
take action based on your prior instructions,
such as dispatch an ambulance; have a
neighbor check in on you or notify a family
member of your situation. Operators will then call to confirm help arrived. For added
security, Direct Link includes an extra emergency call button free of charge. All call
buttons are water-resistant, making them ideal for all rooms—even kitchens and
bathrooms. Direct Link PERS units are compatible with digital cable/VoIP phone
service and AC operated with a rechargeable battery back-up for travel or power failures.
HCPCS: S5160—Emergency response installation and testing; S5161—service fee, per month,
excludes installation and testing
Direct Link, 800-216-4196,
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