Can Autonomous Sensor Systems Improve the Well-being of People Living at Home with Neurodegenerative Disorders?
In this paper, we describe the development of an autonomous tracking system to be used in the home of the elderly population living with neurodegenerative disorders including dementia. The technology advancement has potential to produce low-cost solutions for elder-care in a residential setting. Our approach is based on the concept that body tracking interventional systems can be developed by utilizing low-cost technological solutions affordable to the aged population and can be deployed in the residential settings. We are exploring the usefulness of such systems in providing information that can assist with assessment of performance of activities of daily living in the periods between hospital clinic visits. Management of neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia and multiple sclerosis involve periodic review of patients at a specialist clinic. At these reviews the clinician solicits information about activities of daily living over the preceding period. This period can be a long interval of 6 to 12 months. When self-reports of activity are compared with independent objective measures, discrepancies are found in many areas of healthcare. This can cause difficulties in management of treatment. The autonomous sensor tracking systems developed here could improve care by giving clinicians objective assessments of relapses in the intervals between clinic visits. This could reduce the time spent on in- clinic examination as clinicians can use objective measures instead of semistructured interviews aimed at eliciting an accurate history. This will allow more time to spend on well-being and treatment options.
KeywordsHuman body tracking Human-computer-interaction Kinect based interventional tracking Activities of daily living Medical history taking
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