weekly blog--one for the ages
Since 2013, mail carriers in France have been checking in on vulnerable and elderly residents. The “Watch Over My Parents” program was created by accident. The service began after a heat wave when a number of overburdened city halls asked their local post offices to check on vulnerable and elderly residents. At first, La Poste was happy to do the check-ins for free. Soon afterward it proposed a paid version of the program, called Cohésio, for insurance companies and municipal governments. The service was extended to the general public in 2017 under the name V.S.M.P.
Regular Exercise is good for your heart regardless of your age. You can lower your risk of dying early with a pet dog. Eating mushrooms may lower the risk of prostate cancer.
Some new tech devices for elder care:
Virtual Reality headsets that offer simulations in which caregivers take on the persona of an aging person facing a variety of situations, including macular degeneration, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
A virtual assistant like Amazon’s Alexa that initiates conversation to help a senior stay in touch with family or loved ones, engage in healthy behaviors including nudges to take medication, and stay connected with the outside world.
Robotic cats and pups with sensors that allow them to interact with a human companion as they would with a live pet. The cat responds to touch, rolls over and utters 32 different types of purring sounds. The pup’s heartbeat slows down if a hand is placed on its back.
A toilet seat with sensors that can determine who the user is, and then scans the toilet bowl to determine the size, color, consistency, frequency and shape of the excreta. The data is provided to senior living managers so they can monitor their residents’ health. Information can reveal dehydration, urinary tract infections and diseases like Clostridium difficile (also known as C. difficile and C. diff) and norovirus.