It does not come as a surprise that IoT and the storm of sensors are changing the dynamics of healthcare around the world. Healthcare is one sector that has always been open and forthcoming when it comes to adopting new technology swiftly. In one of my articles, I talked extensively on how these sensors are going to change the whole game of healthcare including elderly care and assisted living. Read Here.
Aging cannot be defied but dependence sure can!
Elderly people have fragile bodies that are not resilient like they once used to be. But, aging need not be synonymous with dependence on your children or anyone else. Assisted living, that respects this idea of independent elderly living, can be implemented with the help of IoT and sensors. There has been a lot of advancements and research going on in this domain.
The University of Missouri has done a commendable job of developing a sensor based solution that can predict falls. The major factor that defies elderly independence is simply falls. They have fragile bodies that affect their stride and gait. This newly developed sensor system can predict the falls by analyzing just that.
Wearable free sensors
Also, it is not required to wear any devices unlike many other wearable sensors. Sensors are scattered around the house at strategic or probable walking path. It is noteworthy, that these sensors do not require a battery charge till a significant period of time. Hence even less hassle for elderly people. These sensors mostly monitor walking pattern, stride length and gait speed alongside other vitals. Further, the system alerts the nurses, doctors or family members if something is irregular.
Analysis with sensor data collected
There has been extensive research behind this. The sensors collect data like walking patterns, speed, gait, stride etc consequently helping in in-depth analysis. For ex, in an analysis, if there has been a significant depletion in the gait speed like 5 cm/sec, the probability of fall increases by 86.3% within the next three weeks. Which is notified to related personnel (nurse, doctor, relative). Same works in the case of shortened stride length. And this sensor system can predict a fall using such analysis.
In conclusion, this type of system can induce confidence into elder people’s lives to a significant level. It can extend their independence and even extend a few years of their lives because most of the fatalities to elders are resultant to falls. As I Mentioned, in one of my previous articles, healthcare sector is going to change 10 folds thanks to IoT, Sensors and most importantly analytics that can be performed with the data gathered.