The Department for Health has developed new interactive technology to help improve the lives of people with dementia, the elderly and disabled people. The academics who have produced the two new applications: In Touch and If Only are now seeking feedback from patients and thier carers.
In Touch is an easy to use video communication system developed specifically for elderly users and those with dementia to help them feel more socially included. It has a touch-screen interface which enables people with dementia to participate in virtual visits with friends and relatives who can't be with them in person through a two-way video link. In Touch differs from current video links, such as web cams, as it provides a wide view of the family living room or kitchen, where the person with dementia could, for example, watch and hear their grandchildren playing.
The second application If Only, is designed for smartphones and encourages users to upload videos and photographs of everyday problems encountered by elderly and disabled people. For example a person who is only able to use one hand may find it difficult to operate a standard tin opener. These videos and images will then be viewed by designers who will endeavour to design innovative new products to tackle these issues.
The University is is now asking people who could use this technology to test the new applications and provide some feedback. If you are a carer, stroke survivor or chronic pain patient and would like more information, please email Inclusive Design Research Assistant Sarah Rook at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 01225 383897 or follow this link.