Tag Archive for: Age in place technology watch

Kiplinger Report Highlights grandCARE in new report

Technology Helps Seniors Remain at Home

Most of us want to remain at home as we get older, but safety and health issues and social isolation can interfere with that plan. A growing number of seniors are turning to state-of-the-art digital tools — via smartphones, GPS, voice activation and sensors — that enable them to stay put indefinitely.

……By 2017, experts expect this market to reach $30 billion. “The aging-in-place technology field is exploding,” says gerontologist Katy Fike, who co-founded San Francisco-based Aging 2.0 in 2012 to advise start-ups geared to boomers and seniors…

 System Comp HR11-13Randall Schafer, 61, of Houston, Tex., uses his grandCARE system to Skype with his mother, 90. (She just pushes a button to videochat.) “My mom is in love with our dog, Daisy,” Schafer says. Her “face lights up” when she sees the schnauzer, he says.

Keeping in touch. You might be able to stay in your home, but you can get lonely. Technology can help you feel connected to friends and family — and sometimes even to medical professionals.

With an interactive touch screen from grandCARE Systems (www.grandcare.com, 262-338-6147), you can look at a photo of a grandson’s Halloween getup or a video replay of his baseball home run. You can listen to music, play word games, read the news or surf the Internet. No need to know how to use a computer


Randall Schafer, 61, of Houston, Tex., uses his grandCARE system to Skype with his mother, 90. (She just pushes a button to videochat.) “My mom is in love with our dog, Daisy,” Schafer says. Her “face lights up” when she sees the schnauzer, he says.

An added feature: The system can transmit health data, from glucose and blood pressure to weight and oxygen readings. For example, a blood pressure cuff with a wireless Bluetooth medical device will record and relay the readings to caregivers…

Read the entire article here

grandCARE can be purchased for a loved one Here
Are you a professional care provider, medical provider or housing organization?  Contact grandCARE for volume purchasing options.

grandCARE Featured in Venture Beat

How tech is helping seniors live at home, not in a home

GrandCare calls their homecare monitoring system the “comprehensive care solution”, perhaps not a far-fetched description. Their system offers a wide range of features, including activity sensors, and a telehealth device that wirelessly records blood pressure, pulse, glucose, weight, and temperature readings. In the center of the system is a senior-friendly touchscreen providing individualized reminders, instructions, and medication prompts. GrandCare also has a social component with virtual video visits, chat, and shared calendar events.

Better Care Logo - Square - Standard - TMMost seniors would like to remain independent, and continue to live in their own home as long as possible. It’s important that they can do so in a safe way. Technology can help ease the worries about not knowing if an aging family member has wandered off, hurt themselves, or forgotten to take their medication.

The elderly population in the U.S is expected to double between now and 2050 (and presumably also the healthcare costs), making it even more important to better facilitate remote patient monitoring. At the same time, investment in tech to meet the needs of the coming age bubble have been doubling down. Here are a few interesting tools that can assist the elderly to stay safe in their own home.


Homecare monitoring systems

By using sensors placed in different locations at home, daily activity movements can be safely monitored. If and when a senior opens the refrigerator, goes to the bathroom, or takes their medication, this can all be tracked and analyzed. If something out of the ordinary happens, the caregiver will be alerted. For example, if dad has spent an extended amount of time in the basement, this could be due to a project he’s working on – or it could be a fall or other kind of emergency. If the refrigerator hasn’t been opened for a long time, this could indicate poor eating habits.


GrandCare calls their homecare monitoring system the “comprehensive care solution”, perhaps not a far-fetched description. Their system offers a wide range of features, including activity sensors, and a telehealth device that wirelessly records blood pressure, pulse, glucose, weight, and temperature readings. In the center of the system is a senior-friendly touchscreen providing individualized reminders, instructions, and medication prompts. GrandCare also has a social component with virtual video visits, chat, and shared calendar events.


Read the entire article here.
This sponsored post is produced in association with Humana.

Technology and Its Benefits to Helping Adult Children, Caregivers and Seniors Live Better Lives

We wanted to share another great blog article by Mark Phillips, Product Manager at GE Healthcare IT.

Can Technology Help Adult Children, Caregivers and Seniors Live Better Lives?

Mark Phillips

Every day the aging population is growing at a significant rate, and at the same time, technology is taking off at a remarkable pace. So why not combine the two to help adult children take care of their aging loved ones without sacrificing their independence?   He has successfully addressed the key needs the Aging and Technology industry faces and has defined them as below:

      • Support seniors in living their absolute best life where they want to live it!
      • Keep families and caregivers connected, even across long distances
      • Support and promote socialization
      • Promote safety and peace of mind
      • Assist with activities of daily living
      • Help coordinate the myriad of care activities
      • Enable easy interaction with community services and businesses
      • Are easy to setup, intuitive, and easy to use
      • Are affordable to acquire and to keep

Phillips goes on to describe the issues that caregivers and their aging loved ones face and then gives some viable techology solutions as a vehicle to provide better, individualized, and more efficient care. GrandCare is mentioned as a stand out solution “these guys are the blaze, the trail pioneers in the market…”  GrandCare’s VP of Business Development, Laura Mitchell, is described by Mark as “a tireless champion for aging in place technology and who has delivered many blogs and webinars to help spread the word”.

Check out Mark Phillip’s complete blog Here.

In Response to: Joe Coughlin’s It’s the Services Stupid”

I just read an extremely insightful blog entry called

It’s the Services Stupid! Transforming Old Age & New Technology Into Business Innovation

by one of my favorites in the industry, Joseph F Coughlin.

I have included a link to his blog entry below, but he basically starts out with “There is not a shortage of technology being developed for old age so why haven’t these gadgets flooded retail shelves or become a routine government procurement tantalizing contractors in the Fed’s Commerce Business Daily? President Bill Clinton’s advisor James Carville coined the phrase ‘it’s the economy stupid’ to capture what the 1992 American public was most concerned about – the economy. Today’s investors, technology researchers and the aging community need to see the promise of technology but understand what older people, families and payers really care about – complete service solutions that lead to improved outcomes in living.”
… this kind of thing has been on my mind these days…what are the stumbling blocks and what can we do to overcome them? Here is my list of just some initial hurdles that we need to get through in order to get to the point where Digital Home Health Technology & Services can easily be deployed in a retail situation or in a medical situation:
1. REIMBURSEMENT!!! Insurance providers and Medicare providers need to recognize telehealth & remote monitoring as worthwhile and cost-effective investments…they will save money. How many studies do we need to prove this is the case? In the same way that computers saved banks money (eventually, after the learning curves)….this will be a huge cost savings (not to mention, we simply don’t have the physical caregivers nor the brick and mortar to support the massive disruptive demographics)
2. Hardware costs need to come down!  Just like the early laptops and cell phones, the cost of the touchcomputers and bluetooth enabled telehealth devices are significant….mass adoption will drive these costs down and make the solutions more affordable to the software developers and end-users.
3. Acceptance of the public!  This will come with time…GrandCare has been in this market since Jan 2005 and the acceptance has already grown by leaps and bounds (maybe not as fast as we expected), but it’s coming around. People are starting to understand WHAT this is and HOW it can apply to their own lives.
4. Acceptance in the Long Term Care & In-Home Care industry. Again…we are getting there…moving there. It is changing from being viewed as competition to being viewed as a caregiving tool…but how do they best utilize and who should play that role? Plays into #5.
5. There is a new role that will be created for the person that can help implement the right technology into the right situation. Just like in the 90’s when a brand new job role emerged (IT)…there is a need for someone that has enough technical know-how, with a healthcare/caregiving background. This person would be responsible for helping a person transition from hospital to home or even to develop a care plan that married hands-on care along with technology…  I wrote about this new role in my white paper “Healing in Place”: Mitigating Hospital Readmissions Using Technology –
6. Business Models!! We need to create sufficient business models for in-home care providers, hospitals & Long Term Care Facilities. How do they charge? How should they monitor? How should they deploy? We need to define the exact process…in fact, I am working on defining this process at the moment for in-home care providers. What new roles they may need to hire, what an example charge could be and how they might utilize the socialization piece, perhaps add some in-home hands-on care and supplement with 24-7 monitoring.
Thanks again for your thoughtful post Dr. Coughlin!
-Laura Mitchell
GrandCare Systems
reposted on http://www.grandcare.wordpress.com
Read the full blog entry here

Home Health Technology Webinar from 2010 What’s the same…what’s changed?

Just thought we’d share this. This is from 2010, a webinar led by GrandCare’s Laura Mitchell to the NAHB & CEDIA audiences… interesting what’s changed and what has stayed the same!!!

Home Technology Alliance Update

Aging in Place: Home Health Technology Webinar Recap

CEDIA, founding sponsor of NAHB’s Home Technology Alliance (HTA), offers quarterly educational webinars to supplement fundamental concepts highlighted in their joint newsletter.  Moderated by leaders in the industry, these webinars offer insider’s tips to help you and your business take advantage of growing trends.

To this end, CEDIA welcomed Laura Mitchell of GrandCare Systems in Minnesota to share her insight into “Home Health Technology: A $20 Billion Industry.” Throughout this webinar, broadcast on September 1, 2010, Ms. Mitchell explained the impressive target base that currently is or will be shortly interested in home health technology while touching on some available solutions.

As indicated in the title of this webinar, the home health technology field is a $20 Billion industry and growing with many contributing factors. With a baby boomer turning 63 every seven seconds, the target audience for this technology is growing exponentially. While this fact remains undisputed, another fact also plays into the hands of this growing field: this group wants to remain independent as long as possible.

“A study conducted in 2005 indicated that 80% of the respondents would be willing to pay an extra $100/month for services and technology that would allow them to stay independent,” mentioned Mitchell.

Mitchell cited Laurie M. Orlov’s Aging in Place Technology Watch, a market research firm providing thought leadership, analysis and guidance about technologies and related services, while she discussed the four main aging in place technology categories available. Each addressed a contributing factor toward a person’s inability to stay independent. The first category, home safety and security, would attends to the fact that one-third of all people aged 65 and older fall each year. Utilizing a home monitor, care givers or loved ones will be alerted immediately in case of an accident. The second category, learning and contribution, recognizes that people who are connected socially live longer. The third category, health and wellness, relates to the fact that medication management is one of the leading drivers to assisted living and nursing home facilities. Utilizing technology for both cognitive and medication management at home can help prevent the necessity of moving into those facilities. Finally, the fourth category, communication and engagement, relates to utilizing email, video phone, cell phone and PCs to stay in touch and traverse the other categories as well.

Perhaps most importantly, trades need to become educated about the newest available technology and how to use it to service this growing cross-section of our society. The consumers all want this technology, but don’t know how to ask for it. It is imperative that each builder and ESC ask questions to determine which technologies best suit their clients both now and going forward into the future. With the demand and the willingness to contribute monthly income toward technologies to stay independent, it would behoove both builders and ESCs to explore home health technology options.

“We are currently experiencing the largest population shift in history,” said Ric Johnson, Chief Technology Officer of Elite Systems Solutions. “This particular group is much different than the previous generation in that they are technology-driven. Any builder who is ignoring this market is losing out because this generation not only has a lot of equity in their current homes, but also more discretionary income to put toward the technology they desire. Options exist today to allow those in the 50+ market to remodel their existing homes or upgrade to new homes and be fully equipped with home healthcare, entertainment, home safety and communication devices. All of this technology equates to a common goal shared by most people in this cross-section of America: allowing the population to age in place.”

Click here to visit CEDIA’s archive of past Webinars including Home Health Technology: A $20 Billion Industry.

In addition to these quarterly Webinars, CEDIA also offers online CEDIA education classes, which can be accessed here, that NAHB members may take for continuing education credit:

  • Introduction to Sub-System Design
  • Introduction to Sub-System Control
  • Fundamentals of Home Theater Design
  • Introduction to Digital Media Servers
  • The Designer, the Client, and the Process
  • Design Documents
  • Project Management Process Flow: An Overview of the PMI Model
  • Home Theater Room Design
  • Introduction to Project Management


CEDIA is an international trade association of companies that specialize in designing and installing electronic systems for the home. The association was founded in September 1989 and has more than 3,500 member companies worldwide. CEDIA Members are established and insured businesses with bona fide qualifications and experience in this specialized field. For more information on CEDIA, visit the association’s Web site atwww.cedia.org .

Smart Money Magazine asks us – can aging be stylish?

Yesterday, Smart Money Magazine posted an article: Can a Medic Alert System be Stylish. They discussed grab bars, Personal Emergency Response Systems, Wearable Pendants, etc. GMU’s Andy Carle, Age in Place Tech Watch’s Laurie Orlov and AgeTek’s own Peter Radsliff all weighed in on solutions and adoption of technology to “age in place”.

I think this is a very important topic to address. People don’t want to use systems/devices that make them “feel” geriatric, old or disabled. That is the reason that the systems need to be viewed more like we view every day conveniences..think of railings on stairs, alarm clocks, smart phones, online calendar/reminders, appointment books, etc. All of these we use every day because they are helpful and they assist EVERYONE. Systems that enable a person to stay independent and at home should be viewed in a similar fashion. Nobody wants to have the scarlet pendant of aging, instead they want to be able to self-enable with gadgets, technologies, design, etc. If we design systems like GrandCare Systems that has many features that ANYBODY would enjoy, it is much more likely that a person will accept. I use GrandCare Systems in my home every day and my two toddler boys do too. We use it for different reasons, using the same alerts, cognitive assists, reminders, family calendar, etc that the system provides. Everyone benefits from convenience, safety, communication, etc. (Think of the iPad). I would NEVER be able to keep track of my schedule without my iPhone reminding me of EVERYTHING. Why should it be so different with non tech-savvy individuals? Check out my entry on why I believe Gen X-ers should also be adopting these technologies as early adopters: http://wp.me/pyOLA-dx Thanks for the article – short answer: YES, aging can and SHOULD be stylish and graceful! Laura Mitchell GrandCare Systems www.grandcare.com

What are your thoughts???

Read their article here: Can a Medic Alert System Be Stylish? – SmartMoney.com http://www.smartmoney.com/spending/technology/now-in-vogue-grandpas-gadgets-1299712884177/#ixzz1GJrWJD00

GrandCare on ABC: TECH THIS OUT!

GrandCare & Aging Technology Industry Analyst Laurie Orlov, Featured on ABC NEWS program: Tech This Out: 3rd story a little over 8 mins in: http://ow.ly/2zknV


Catching up – more new and notable tech offerings

Catching up – more new and notable tech offerings
Submitted by Laurie Orlov on Tue, 08/10/2010 – 13:50
It’s time for a quick August update of more new and notable tech offerings, from emerging vendors and new offerings from existing vendors – including beta testing. Please let me know about others you know about and not spotted via the Product Snapshots term on this site:

GrandCare Systems (grandcare.com): GrandCare Systems has just launched HomeBase as an entry point “communication, socialization, webcam touch panel for sharing pictures, video, email, calendaring – and some dealers have included a concierge service request. Sensors can be integrated at a later point.” Charles Hillman, CEO.

GrandCare selected as Age in Place Tech Watch – vendor of the month

Aging in Place Technology Watch October Newsletter by Laurie Orlov: ageinplacetech.com

…Given the patient/people, our vendor of the month has got to be GrandCare Systems and Charlie Hillman (a co-panelist in Boston). GrandCare’s sensor-based monitoring system addresses the social, monitoring, caregiver, and health issues in a single system. This is a conceptual model that more vendors need to embrace. And if I can nominate a second one, it would be the very new FloH Club, launched help older people get help with technology like computers and networks…

Read the entire article here: http://www.ageinplacetech.com/newsletter/aging-place-technology-watch-october-newsletter

All the best wishes for a great November,
Laurie Orlov