STAYING INDEPENDENT IN OWN SMART HOME

The project enables and empowers informal next-of-kin caregivers to adopt and install the digital solution and digitally look after their older parent

Use-case Scenario

Christa is an active 74-year-old woman who lost her husband a year ago. Christa has lived alone in Hjørring (northern Denmark) since her husband’s death. She is mobile, although she is starting to suffer from pain in her hip and legs. She has a 46-year-old daughter with family and two children who live in Copenhagen (460 km and almost 5h away by car). Christa is slowly getting used to living alone, but is also feeling insecure because no one would know if she needed help.

Her daughter, Benedicte, recently read about the novel AAL4All (A4A) home care monitoring system in a flyer from the local care service provider. Benedicte was immediately convinced that A4A could provide additional safety and allow her mother to continue living independently in her home. Using the promotional link in the flyer, Benedicte bought the complete package online consisting of 5 room sensor devices, one for each room, including bathroom and hallway, and a voice agent device.

The room sensor devices detect activity within rooms as well as mobility between rooms. During the first two weeks, the system learned Christa’s behavioral patterns and optimized its learning process by asking Christa about different activities in her everyday via the voice agent. Christa decided not to download the app because she is not digitally literate, and therefore she has no interface with the system other than voice interaction. Benedicte has downloaded the app, though, and seamlessly configured it to receive the type of care alerts that she has agreed with Christa (activity and mobility anomalies); Christa has verified her data sharing consent via email.

Since the installation of A4A, Christa has felt safer and more autonomous, and her daughter has been more relaxed and able to better concentrate on her job. Both know that if something happens and Christa is not moving around as usual and answering the voice agent, the A4A system will send an alert message.

One morning, Christa has been unusually inactive. A4A detects via the room sensor that Christa has been in the living room for some time and recognizes via the built-in AI that this is unusual compared to Christa’s normal behavior. 

A4A starts a conversation via the voice agent and asks, “Christa, have you given the plants water today?”. Christa does not answer at first and the voice agent continues asking: “Christa, how are you today?”. Christa then answers: “I just don’t feel motivated today”. A4A concludes that Christa’s mental well-being is rather poor today and suggests: “Christa, why don’t you take a walk outside in the fresh air?”. Christa answers: “No, I don’t want to go outside”.  A4A now sends a message to the app on Benedicte’s phone that Christa’s mental state is poor. Benedicte is at work right now, but calls Christa. The conversation with the daughter is encouraging for Christa, and Benedicte promises to visit her on the weekend. Benedicte is glad to have bought the complete package of A4A with integrated mental monitoring function, because Christa suffers from mild old-age depression.

Benedicte knows that if something seems wrong or unusual in her mother’s home based on A4A’s pattern recognition of activities of daily living (ADL) and anomaly detection with speech validation, a care alert will be sent (no response from Christa also triggers a care alert). In addition to care alerts requiring some form of response (call, site visit), A4A also allows Benedicte to receive an indication of her mother’s well-being in the app based on physical behavior and mental state if Christa consents to that. During their
time together on the weekend, Benedicte and Christa agree to subscribe in the app to an additional “first responder” service from the local homecare service provider, as Benedicte lives far away and cannot immediately check on her mother in case of emergency.

Help Us Help You

Do you have experience as an informal caregiver or a care receiver, we would love to hear from you!

You can contribute through this survey link (it will take less than 10 minutes)