UNBC brings in more supportive technology for elders in the north
(Photo submitted by Abby Dooks/UNBC)
A panel was held earlier this week to discuss introducing technology to remote areas in BC to make aging a more comfortable experience.
Dr Robert McAloney is a Director at the Centre for Technology Adoption for Aging in the North (CTAAN) and is working to bridge the gap that might be seen in Northern BC.
“We try to work just work closely with partners, understand the need, challenges, and how people operate, and then collaborate with technology developers, so companies from around the world really.”
McAloney said they then try to co-develop projects so that when technology is tested, it can then be implemented in the region.
Some of the items they’ve gathered to help people aging in the north include:
- A glove that dampens tremors.
- Some virtual reality technology that helps with fitness, but also adds social engagement.
- Smart home technology that hooks up to beds and chairs.
- Apps that can engage with people living with dementia.
- An indoor gardening apparatus that can keep people engaged.
McAloney said these tools are especially important during the pandemic, as many people in long-term care are isolated from their family and friends.
“All the more reason for working closely with partners to understand challenges and needs of the day. And knowing enough technology where we can make connections fast. It’s about getting things in the hands of people that need it, to make their lives better as fast as possible.”