Tag Archive for: aging technology

GrandCare will be at CES in LVCC North Hall #2812

Going to CES?

GrandCare will be showcasing their communication, cognition, monitoring and wellness assessment technology at CES 2011 in Las Vegas, LVCC North Hall #2812. CES is Jan 6-9th.

We would love to see you there. Want to meet with us, just email info(@)GrandCare.com

We have just a few FREE show passes to CES left for our favorite friends, email us to find out more about that!!!

Laura Mitchell of GrandCare will be speaking on the Social Networking Panel at the Pre-CES workshop in the Mirage Hotel, Las Vegas, on Wednesday Jan 5th from 1p-430p. More info here

Stay After the workshop for THE ANNUAL AGETEK Networking and Meeting! And after, brave souls will head to KARAOKE arranged by PRESTO!!!

Laura & Charlie will also be speaking during the Silvers Summit on Saturday January 8th at CES. More info here


Laura Mitchell interviewed on The Peggy Smedley Radio Show

Peggy Smedley interviewed GrandCare’s Laura Mitchell in December 2010 and they discussed the GrandCare System as well as acceptance of technology by the aging population.

Here is a link to a recording of Laura Mitchell being interviewed on the GrandCare system on The Peggy Smedley Radio Show.

The Peggy Smedley Show interview with Laura Mitchell

Thank you to The Peggy Smedley Radio Show for the opportunity to share GrandCare!


The Peggy Smedley Show

The Peggy Smedley Show, the voice of M2M and connected devices, is an informative, yet fun, talk show hosted by Peggy Smedley, president of Specialty Publishing Co. The show broadcasts live for one hour each Tuesday at 12 noon CT. The Peggy Smedley Show features discussions with top newsmakers and technology companies, as well as in-depth analysis of the week’s biggest connected devices stories and trends.

Connected devices encompass fitness, GPS/personal navigation, home security, energy management, and ereaders, just to name a few. Rather than focusing on how to start a technology company, or reporting on sustaining a lifestyle, The Peggy Smedley Show helps listeners across all industries, in companies of all sizes, understand the issues and challenges of moving toward this emerging innovation.

12-9-10 Thursday Webinar: Laurie Orlov from Aging in Place Technology Watch speaks

GrandCare Systems 12-9-10 Webinar
We meet here: http://my.dimdim.com/grandcare
on Thursday December 9th, 2pm EDT (1p CT).

Topic: Laurie Orlov from Aging in Place Technology Watch speaks on 10 tips for launching a new product line
It’s getting to be that time of year. January 2011 is a unique moment in time when the first of the baby boomers become seniors, turning 65 at the rate of 10,000 per day from that day forward. Laurie shares 10 tips to successfully launch a new product line in the aging technology industry.

Our Speaker: Laurie Orlov
Laurie M. Orlov, a tech industry veteran, writer, speaker and elder care advocate, is the founder of a market research firm that provides thought leadership, analysis and guidance about technologies and related services that enable boomers and seniors to remain longer in their home of choice. In addition to her technology background and years as a technology industry analyst, Laurie served as a volunteer long-term care ombudsman and is certified in Geriatric Care Management from the University of Florida and the author of Aging in Place Technology Watch, When Your Parents Need Elder Care.

GrandCare Systems – Scheduled to Speak & Exhibit at 2nd Annual Digital Health Summit at CES

West Bend, WI, 2010 – GrandCare Systems is scheduled to exhibit in the Aging Technology Alliance Pavilion (AgeTek) and speak in the Silvers Summit at the 2011 International CES on January 7, 2011 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, LVCC North Hall, BOOTH 2812.

The one–day Digital Health & Silvers Summit and exhibition of more than 65 companies will bring together healthcare industry executives developers, manufacturers, buyers, distributors, service providers, academicians, and more, to examine the fast-growing digital health industry, and take a look at the trends and technologies leading the way and explore its future.

“CES is shaping up to be the premier event for digital health,” said GrandCare founder, Charlie Hillman. “I am appreciative and encouraged by industry giants like UnitedHealth Group, who are leading the way with their presence and sponsorship in the aging and technology field.”

Industry leader, GrandCare Systems, will provide full demonstrations of Aging in Place Communication/Cognition/ADL Monitoring and Tele-Wellness Assessment technology. Dealer/Reseller Opportunities are available. GrandCare has been available for sale since 2006 and has dealers and resellers throughout the United States and Canada. AgeTek Pavilion participants include: GrandCare Systems , Presto, Bath Packs and Wellcore.

The Digital Health & Silvers Summit exhibit hall is open January 6 – 9, 2011) and will complement the one-day event and showcase today’s generation of companies addressing a variety of industry needs. Products and services highlighted include those addressing managed care, patient/doctor communication, shorter hospital stays and faster recovery time, lowered costs for health insurance, early prevention and detection, digital patient information records, medical attention over distances, and diagnosing and battling disease. Now in its second year, The Digital Health Summit at CES focuses on the growing market of consumer-based innovations that sit at the convergence of technology and healthcare. For more information about the Digital Health Summit, including agenda and list of exhibiting companies, visit: http://digitalhealthsummit.com/.

About GrandCare Systems
GrandCare Systems is a caregiving and communications TOOL, designed to enhance familial and caregiving relationships while giving Loved Ones and their Care-Partners desired “peace of mind”, freedom, dignity and entertainment.
Using a series of wireless Activity and Tele-wellness sensors, GrandCare can notify care-partners if anything seems amiss, while allowing loved ones to receive pictures, messages, emails, reminders, calendar events, family videos and more on a simple to use, interactive touch panel. The Loved One can play interactive games like solitaire and tic-tac-toe, check news headlines, see weather reports, listen to favorite music and even have 2-way virtual video visits with family…all without having to know ANYTHING about using a computer.

For more information:
Laura Mitchell
Director of Business Relations
GrandCare Systems

If only the elderly could stay HOME: GrandCare Featured in Inc. Magazine

Hot Market: The Aging Population
Baby boomers are hitting old age—and they are terrified of nursing homes. If only there was some way to keep the elderly in their homes and healthy.

By Leigh Buchanan | Nov 1, 2010
By 2030, 71 million Americans will be over age 65, according to the U.S. Census. Currently, 30 percent of elderly Americans who are not in assisted living live alone, and 90 percent say they want to grow old in their homes, according to AARP. Home health care, much of it for the elderly, is one of the fastest-growing segments in the country’s fastest-growing industry.

The Inspiration: In 1993, Charles Hillman, an engineering consultant, was living on a farm in Wisconsin. His great-aunt Clara, then in her late 80s, occupied a cottage 100 yards from the main house. One day, Aunt Clara called to complain she was cold. Arriving at the cottage, Hillman found all the windows flung wide; his aunt said she had opened them because the room was smoky. “I went down into the crawlspace and saw her furnace was on fire,” recalls Hillman. After extinguishing the blaze, Hillman asked his aunt why she hadn’t mentioned the erratic temperatures and strange noises that had been emanating from beneath the house for days. Says Hillman: “She gave the answer that boomers caring for aging parents hear all the time: ‘I know you’re busy and didn’t want to bother you.’ ”

The Business: GrandCare Systems, based in West Bend, Wisconsin, makes technology that helps seniors live independently. Sensors installed around the home monitor motion (tracking, for example, if the resident appears to be wandering or fails to rise from a chair or bed and how often doors open and close); check room temperature; and allow remote reporting of blood pressure, pulse, weight, and other health indicators. A communications base, accessed through an ordinary television, delivers content that includes weather and spiritual offerings and enables communication with family, friends, and caregivers.

How It Got Started: After rescuing Aunt Clara, Hillman had to wait for the technology to catch up to his idea for a system to help seniors and their caregivers avoid similar situations. He bided his time by studying the market. He joined the boards of a local long-term-care organization and the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging. “As we would discuss finances and state reimbursement, it was pretty clear that institutional long-term care was not a sustainable model,” says Hillman. “Also, the view of nursing homes has really changed. People fear them more than death.”

As he prepared to launch the business in 2004, Hillman joined a consortium of companies developing technology for the aged. The consortium’s large corporate members — including Intel and Philips — were generous with their survey data. That research helped Hillman determine how to price his offerings, market simultaneously to seniors and their personal and professional caregivers, and design products that wouldn’t simply be unplugged or ignored. “People are used to getting information from their television and their telephone, so that’s where we started,” says Hillman, who purchased sensors and other hardware components from GE and hired programmers to develop software linking it all together.

The company launched in 2005 and spent several years testing the system in the independent-living units of long-term-care facilities. Those facilities may become his customers as well, Hillman says.

The Result: GrandCare released its new core system, HomeBase, last summer, and had sold several hundred units by mid-August, after the product was featured on CBS’s The Early Show. The company, which expects to become profitable this year, has seven employees — chiefly programmers — and markets through a network of almost 200 independent dealers. It has sold systems in every U.S. state, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia.

Comment by GrandCare Systems:
thanks for the wonderful article Inc. Magazine!!! The GrandCare System was released into the market in 2006 and has been installed by authorized dealers ever since into private homes, long term care facilities, independent apartments and group homes. Our latest model, the GrandCare HomeBase allows families to not only assess activities of daily living and tele-wellness, but also has an easy-to-use INTERACTIVE touchpad for the LOVED one to be able to see pictures, messages, emails (and post simple responses using the onscreen key pad), online family videos, two way interactive web chat via skype, check weather reports, play games like trivia, solitaire, tic-tac-toe and more. It’s simple for the LOVED one to use and requires ZERO computer knowledge or experience! Authorized family and caregivers can access info easily from any Internet Connected computer and send communications through the GrandCare web portal.

Thanks again to Inc. Magazine and Leigh Buchanan for covering the ever-important issue of staying safe, independent, healthy and HAPPY at home!!

The GrandCare Team

HealthTech Marketing Group takes on GrandCare Systems!


Searching for Technology to assist with care for the Aged:

(Taken from the HealthTech Marketing Group Literature)
For Families
Caring for a senior can be a challenging, expensive, and frustrating experience. Allowing them to remain safely living where they prefer is our focus. As the leading provider of Aging-in-Place solutions, we ensure that your loved one is monitored, from a safety and health perspective giving you peace of mind. And our communications tools, computerless e-mail and photo sharing, ensure they are able to stay connected without learning new skills.

For Facilities
Keeping a watchful eye on your closed-door residents is challenging yet can be critical to their survival. HealthTech provides solutions that allow the senior to be safe in their private room, and the facility completely connected to their situation. As the leading provider of technology solutions for seniors, we ensure that your residents are monitored, from a safety and health perspective, and are able to function without ongoing attention.

For Agencies
Being able to protect your clients without being there is what HealthTech provides for home health providers. Our Aging-in-Place solutions allow the senior to be safe at home, while keeping you completely connected to their situation 24/7. You can increase their survival rate while lowering their cost of service. We ensure that your clients are monitored, from a safety and health perspective, and are able to function without ongoing attention.

For Professionals
Wouldn’t it be great to allow your patients to stay home and provide daily health updates to you? With HealthTech solutions you can reduce office visits while improving patient care/case management. You are always connected to them, ensuring that you are in the loop at all times. Being able to protect your clients is what HealthTech is all about.
Our solutions allow the senior to be safe at home, while keeping you completely connected.

About GrandCare
Using a combination of remote environmental and passive physiological sensing, RULE-BASED intelligence and networking technologies, GrandCare Systems allows the caregiver to remotely and passively monitor a loved-one without compromising dignity or privacy. This reduces caregiver stress by providing peace of mind all around. GrandCare recognizes the importance of an active body, mind and soul by simultaneously addressing the loneliness and social isolation associated with aging. Family can easily stay connected by virtually sending communications to the loved one’s TV or TouchScreen. This not only improves the quality of life for an individual living alone, but also enhances memory.

GrandCare System Features
• Activity Monitoring including:
– Door Openings, Weight, Meds, Blood Pressure, Sleeping Patterns and Wake-ups
• Wellness Reports
-Weight, Blood Pressure, Pulse
• Rules-based Communications
– Phone, E-mail and Text
• Family and Staff Communications
and Scheduling Systems
How GrandCare Works
The GrandCare system connects to any television set with audio/video
inputs and any full-time Internet connection. The GrandCare sensors are
discreetly placed around the residence and report sensor activity to the
system. Caregivers can view the data on-line and set up conditions to receive automated alerts via e-mail, text messages or phone calls. Family can send communications and cognitive assists right to an interactive touchpad or dedicated
channel on the loved one’s television set.

GrandCare is now working together with HealthTech Marketing Group!

About HealthTech:

HealthTech Marketing Group launched more than a decade ago as Marketlink, an international provider of market launch services for high-technology startups. Our success has spanned many categories of technologies, from networking, security and storage to mobile and wireless. In 2009, we made the decision to launch a healthcare focused initiative, specializing in the rapidly growing senior market. The aging baby boomer population, combined with expanding mortality rates of Americans, has created an enormous and rapidly growing market for Aging-in-Place technologies. With the new
focus on health care initiatives, HealthTech Marketing Group was launched. HealthTech provides aging-in-place technologies to the adult children of the senior community, to facilities and agencies that service and house seniors, and to professional caregivers including doctors and service providers. And for the supplier base, we provide an ideal environment to aggressively launch your solutions through our provider clients and directly to the senior community. HealthTech Marketing Group is headquartered in Novi, Michigan. We have amassed a U.S. sales force in excess of 180 professionals located across the country and our long-term goal is to create a group of 400+ professionals, touching every community. HealthTech Marketing Group…Technology Solutions for the Aging Community!


Want to see how GrandCare works? View this 30 minute overview led by GrandCare Systems’ Laura Mitchell: https://my.dimdim.com/view/reco/all/grandcare/default/c2a49632-8b93-4352-aa65-1fe2232d470c

An overview of the need for a system like GrandCare, the various models and a quick look at the interface from the LOVED ONE side as well as from the CAREGIVER side!

Brave new world: Will home technology make seniors safer?

Article from Fifty Plus Advocate By Brian Goslow

Jeanette Pearce lives hundreds of miles away from her son and daughter but is able to stay in daily contact with them — and they are able to check on her well being without having to constantly call her.
Pearce and her children are leading the way into a new frontier, one that could play a key role in allowing seniors to live in their homes for many extra years: The 87-year-old is one of the first people to have a GrandCare monitoring system installed in her home.
“We’ve always kept in close contact,” Pearce said, “but now, sometimes when they’re on the phone, they’ll tell me they’re about to send me a picture.”
When her son, Rod, moved his family into a new home in Ohio, Pearce, who lives at Ravenwood Village in Hagertown, Md., said she almost felt she had moved with them, thanks to the photos they posted soon afterwards. Her daughter, Laura, also sent photos when she moved into a new apartment in St. Louis.
“My daughter fixed the system so when they send me a new picture, a cuckoo sounds to let me know it’s arrived,” Pearce said.
GrandCare Systems, based in West Bend, Wis., began developing the product in the 1990s, and brought it to market in 2006 with the promise of helping to alleviate “the loneliness and social isolation associated with aging.”
A series of products allows family members and caretakers to remotely check up on the well being of their loved ones and charges. GrandCare’s most recent release can monitor a person’s weight and blood pressure, receive messages from pre-approved parties, get the latest news and weather and show videos from family events.
GrandCare is not alone in developing technology intended to help seniors stay at home. The MIT AgeLab in Cambridge (www.agelab.mit.edu) has been creating age-friendly technology since 1999. The goal of its eHome Social Kitchen Project is to create products that combine NASA-designed technology — intended for use in outer space — with its own monitoring technology that’ll lead to a domestic kitchen setup that allows caretakers to watch out-of-the-norm behavior from afar.
“We’re tying to make it safer for older adults to age at home longer and maintain their independence,” said AgeLab communications coordinator Angelina T. Gennis. “It’s aimed at not having caregivers and kids have to go over to their patient’s or parent’s home daily to make sure they’re safe.”
While the intention of these technologies is to help seniors live at home longer, there are some people who want nothing to do with “big brother” watching their every move. If a monitoring system of any kind diminished a person’s feeling of independence, it could negate the benefit it was intended to provide.
“I would be 100 percent opposed to a tracking device of this sort if the senior adult was disapproving of it,” said Alissa A. Cavanaugh, MSW, of Cornelius, N.C., a licensed clinical social worker. “The benefits of remaining in the home would be abolished if an older adult believed a tracking devise would impede on how they have decided to age optimally.”
Cavanaugh provides counseling services in the homes of older adults and their families. She works closely with caretakers who are unable to monitor their parents as much as they’d like to due to time constraints. She thought electronic monitoring systems sounds like an effective way to help aging parents stay in their own homes for as long as possible.
When seniors feel depressed, Cavanaugh said, a major contributing factor is the feeling of losing control of their lives, self-determination and independence.
“Providing the senior with the ability to make this important decision (to have a monitoring system installed) autonomously can be extremely empowering and allow them to own decisions about their health and well-being.”
Pearce had no problem having the GrandCare system installed. Thanks to six sensors set up throughout her apartment, her children can check in via computer or cell phone message to see if her day is moving routinely. On occasion, when she’s left or returned to her apartment at a non-routine time, her daughter has called to confirm her safety. “I was glad she called,” Pearce said. “If I didn’t come back in, it could have meant that I’d fallen. It’s good to have somebody else checking up on me. I’m perfectly satisfied with it.”
Pete McMillin, managing and marketing director for the Diakon Ravinwood and Robinwood Lutheran Senior Living Communities in Maryland, helped oversee the GrandCare installations there. His personal experience makes him want to see products that help seniors age at home safely — most notably the time his grandmother suffered a painful fall and wasn’t discovered for two days.
When GrandCare was being showcased for potential volunteers at Ravinwood and Robinwood, one resident signed on for the program after her daughter convinced her of the potential benefits. “She didn’t think it concerned her while her daughter was nodding her head, ‘Yes, yes, that would be a big help and big relief to me,’ ” McMillin said. “We both said to her, ‘Maam, you move around in a walker. When do you think you’ll need it?’ ”
Greg Lescalleet, Ravinwood and Robinwood’s facility manager, wanted to make sure his mother, Shirley Lescalleet, 74, of nearby State Line, Pa., follows her normal routine. He uses GrandCare to monitor her restroom, bed and recliner movement. If she doesn’t check her blood pressure and weight daily, the GrandCare system will send her a reminder to do so.
“When she goes to her doctor, I can print out 30 days of blood pressure and weight readings,” Lescalleet said. “The doctor sees it as a handy tool.”
Shirley Lescalleet is a late-night person — with a well-intended curfew. “Once it hits 11 p.m., if she opens her door, I get a message,” said her son. “One time, I got a message at 3 a.m. that her outside door had been opened. When I asked her about it, she said her dog wanted to go out. It was rational thinking on her part.”
Greg Lescalleet said the system makes him confident his mom can stay in her home another 10 to 15 years, her health willing.
Jude Harper, director of operations for the Harper Technology Group, which sells and installs GrandCare’s monitoring and communication systems, compares using the system to using a bank ATM. “It’s probably easier, along the lines with using a dishwasher and dryer. But not as hard as trying to fully use a microwave; some of those settings are difficult.”
Harper said the GrandCare technology is built simply so a senior wouldn’t have to deal with the frustration that goes into the set-up of a computer, let alone the series of technological challenges that would follow.
Rather, a simple touch of the screen allows seniors to access their favorite sources of news or the websites for local community centers, church organizations or town activities.
They can also get e-mail from preselected sources, normally family members and friends, which protects against the spam that has led to many a senior giving up their computer out of frustration or paying for repairs after a computer virus incapacitates their machine.
The systems also provide games intended to help keep seniors’ minds sharp. “Studies released by a lot of medical doctors show a lot of the benefits of mind engagement beyond crossword puzzles,” Harper said. “The games, which take 20 minutes to play and are normally played five times a week, stimulate different parts of the brain and brain health and brain fitness.”
The GrandCare games have proven to have another benefit as well. “A lot of the time, grandchildren will come over and start playing the games,” Harper said. “The children look up to their grandparents now because they’ve cool — they’ve got games.”
Due to its relative small size, the GrandCare system can be brought along when a senior travels or goes to a seasonal second home. “You can pack your devices into a bag,” Harper said. “It weighs about a pound and a half. It keeps your information and health data up to date. It’s a pro-active approach.”
GrandCare can be bought outright or leased. Along with an upfront care plan and installation fee, the monthly rental rate runs between $199 and $399. Currently, four monitoring systems with a variety of features and options are offered. For more information, visit www.grandcare.com.
Among the products in development at MIT’s AgeLab is a monitoring device that attaches to an electrical socket to detect energy use -— such as turning on a coffeemaker or electric stove or using an electric can opener -— as a way of notifying those monitoring a senior that they’re following their normal patterns for the day.
A “smart trashcan” monitors food usage and intake through a sensor that reads a package’s expiration date; a scale below calculates how much of the package contents were eaten. If something is tossed after its expiration date and detected to have been unused or barely eaten through its weight reading, it tells the caregiver that part of the senior’s nutritional needs may be being neglected.
AgeLab research associate Daisuke Asai said it plans to install eHome Social Kitchen prototypes in two homes in the United States and two in Japan this December to test its workability.
It’ll be a while until the eHome Social Kitchen can be used widely. “The major problem is affordability,” Gennis said. “We’re using NASA technology. It’s all very expensive. We have to find out how to make it affordable to bring into the kitchen at prices that people can afford.”
One major consideration for AgeLab in developing new monitoring technology is whether or not adult children are seeking these kinds of items to help them look after their parents. “We have the technology to place anything in the home,” Gennis said. “The question is how to go about doing it in a way that allows seniors to keep their independence and dignity.”
To gather this information, AgeLab regularly conducts focus group meetings, and has partnered with The Hartford, which has gone into older adult living communities to talk with residents about the kind of items they’d like to have in their homes in the future.
“The strength of AgeLab is looking at these things from many different levels,” Gennis said. “It’s not about creating fun and new devices, it’s about creating devices that will be beneficial to people’s lives.”

Thursday Conference Dial-in has changed

Hi All –

We have some pretty exciting topics coming up for our weekly aging & technology webinar/conference call discussions.

Our conference dial-in information/webinar log in has changed, so if you are interested in joining us (all are welcome), please send me a private message and I’ll let you know how to get involved.

Calls are every Thursday at 2pm Eastern/1pm Central
We begin with Announcements, then introductions/networking and a roundtable discussion. The roundtable involves people sharing information, ideas, websites (I share boomer authority for example) and more. Then, we have our speaker. Calls last an hour.

This coming Thursday 7-30-09), Phyllis Zimbler Miller discusses how Twitter can help grow your business. The following week, Aug 6 RoseMary Bakker on Dementia/Alzheimer’s online resource, 8-13, Ken Kerr from Home Controls discusses the VALUE of technology and the PRICE tag associated with it.

Many exciting topics coming up!

Please join us!!!!