For senior living communities, balancing vigilance and resident independence is important—and technology can help.
 
A recent guest column in McKnight's Senior Living, "3 ways technology can improve senior living efficiency and quality of life," outlines the benefits of passive monitoring, personalized alerts, and measuring presence. Author John Sola is a business development manager for teleCARE IP and the senior living and long-term care sectors at Ascom North America.

  • Passive Monitoring: Passive monitoring saves caregivers time and protects resident privacy. CAST Commissioner Russell Crews, the president and CEO of CAST Patron C. C. Young, a nonprofit senior living community in East Dallas, TX, supports this approach. “C. C. Young has dedicated considerable resources so that its residents can live as safely, and autonomously as possible,” he said. “Resident care is our utmost concern. We want to support their needs and also provide the amenities they desire.” For more information about Passive Monitoring, please check out the CAST Functional Assessment and Activity Monitoring Online Tools. 
  • Personalization: A unified, scalable platform for an emergency call, wander management, and activity-based passive sensors can enable facilities to personalize alerts based on a variety of resident risk factors. Personalized alerts are especially important to prevent falls and, for residents who have Alzheimer’s disease, wandering. Devices include wearable wristbands or pendants, passive infrared wireless motion sensors, wireless universal transmitters that integrate with third-party wired sensors such as bed exit pressure pads, and low-frequency beacons that support intelligent alert and wander control solutions.
  • Presence: Measuring “presence” tells operators how much care certain residents require. These analytics are important for care, for pricing, and for measuring quality. Detailed analytics can let families see what care their family member asks for and how quickly that care is received. Those numbers can give families peace of mind—and give the operator a competitive edge.