A team of researchers at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) are developing a wearable technology that monitors the health condition of the elderly.
Working with the Department of Geriatrics at the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences (LSMU), KTU are developing a system that consists of several sensor and a controller that automatically calls emergency services whenever the wearer is in need of help.
“With this system, the elderly can feel at peace and safe at home. They don’t need constant supervision. The developed technology is well suited for clinical treatment and can also be implemented in various geriatric institutions”, says Egidijus Kazanavicius, a professor at the KTU Faculty of Informatics, one of the authors of the technology.
The system is consisting of stationary sensors mounted indoors and a small wearable 3-5 cm high device. The system is constantly monitoring the health conditions and body position of a person. When is senses that the person has possibly collapsed, the system sends a signal to those listed as emergency contacts.
“We aimed to create a system that would record the patient’s position, body posture, and movement indoors. If something goes wrong, the person falls, or any other problem occurs, the controller will record the patient’s collapse and the alarm will automatically be transmitted”, explains Prof Kazanavicius, the Director at KTU Centre of Real-Time Computer Systems.
“Having access to the Internet is required but not a necessity. Emergency calls and notifications can also be sent via GSM”, says Prof Kazanavicius.
“Let’s say, if a person gestures with a hand on which he or she is wearing the bracelet-controller, in most cases, the gesture will be recorded as a collapse. Or, for example, when a person climbs the stairs, algorithms determine each step as a fall. We worked hard to avoid such misunderstandings”, says Prof Kazanavicius.