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So wrong: Japan’s hope for the tech-enabled and robotic aging life

Remember the Cyberdine demo of HAL at ASA some years ago? The Hybrid Assistive Limb (HAL) was designed by a venture firm in Japan to help a wheelchair-bound individual stand and move. It was very cool. It was priced at that time (2009) at around $5000. By 2014, the device could be rented for the equivalent of $1400/month. And now it has again been modified. This time, according to the WSJ article about Japanese demographics, the country needs its older laborers to work substantially longer. So a 67-year-old worker in the construction industry can stack wood just like someone half his age. Yay. And then there is the charming Pepper robot, selling for an equivalent of $1600, leading recreational activities in senior housing, charming the residents. In Japan, 13% of the population is 75+, and in another statistic, 15% of the 'elderly' population has dementia.

Five technologies from LeadingAge 2015 Annual Meeting in Boston

An age-friendly event in young Boston. Last week, LeadingAge returned to Boston after an absence of 23 years, now that the city has a convention center that can hold the 8500 attendees. Perhaps more remarkable, is the desire of the city to become age and dementia-friendly, as opined by the Mayor, Marty Walsh, who received a citation for such efforts. For convention attendees, that may need some more work. The pedestrian walk time duration near the convention center was just enough time to (walk quickly) and only reach the road's median. No surprise – as the town is for the young, and this new area was likely designed by them: Boston's median resident age is 31.7. The event exhibition hall was the expected mix of food service providers, furnishings, bathroom supplies, technology suppliers, and health-related products for the senior living industry.  There were quite a few sizable technology companies known in the CCRC/Senior Housing market, including CDW, Stanley Healthcare, Panasonic, LG CNS, Hamilton CapTel, IN2L, SimpleC, Care Innovations. Here are just five new technologies drawn from the event, with the material from the company websites:

November will matter for Caregivers, Alzheimer’s, Diabetes and more

When is a month not just another calendar page? Thanksgiving is not the only festivity in November. It’s the month when PR agencies get to do what they do best – publicize, generate awareness, mobilize media coverage, also known as free content. There’s the laundry list of days to consider.  While October was pretty full of health observance dates, November is also impressive. There's Purple Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month (5 million Americans) not to be confused with World Alzheimer’s Day held September 21 (46 million globally). It’s also National Family Caregiver’s Month (90 million family caregivers) and National Diabetes Month (29 million) and World Diabetes Day (371 million worldwide). Now you see those numbers, now you are aware.

Justice in Aging finds Gaps in Dementia Training Standards in New 50-State Survey

08/24/2015

Oakland, CA. (August 24, 2015) Justice in Aging (formerly the National Senior Citizens Law Center) today released a first-of-its-kind comprehensive survey of state laws around dementia training. The survey, Training to Serve People with Dementia: Is our Health Care System Ready? was created with the support of the Alzheimer’s Association.

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Five aging in place technologies from AARP’s LivePitch

Everybody off the bus -- the last convention for AARP. Last week’s Life@50+ National Event in Miami was reportedly the last time AARP will produce one of these national entertainment-filled conventions with speakers and tracks for all interests and crowds of boomer-and-beyond women (mostly, based on observation) -- volunteering to pack lunches, climbing onto buses, and basking in the Florida sunshine. The health-focused startup Live Pitch event on Thursday heard 4 minutes from the 10 finalists, 2 minutes from five Florida-based startups, and short 1-minute pitches from alternates from each of those. Judges selected Splitsecnd, a portable device-plus-service for automatic vehicle crash tracking (similar to GM's profitable OnStar, but currently vehicle brand-independent). The audience voted for Audicus (for buying lower-priced hearing aids online) and Constant Therapy (a mobile solution to help patients improve brain function after stroke or brain injury.)

Marketing nonsense alternatives to assisted living by preying on fear

Are ‘drop-in chefs’ an alternative to assisted living?  Some headline writers saw an opportunity – and some ran with the title even though the original NPR story stepped back a bit and said ‘help seniors stay in their own homes.’  You probably have heard that cost-sharing is an alternative to assisted living. Or sharing your home with roommates through Room2Carewith the founder wisely observing “Not everyone needs to be in assisted living.” Or let’s take Granny Pods – are they an alternative to assisted living? Remember these – prefab back yard cottages fit up with computers to provide medication reminders?  Or maybe Information Week’s Eight Technologies provide an alternative to assisted living -- the article said ‘changing home health care,’ but web designers know SEO and threw in 'assisted living.'

Senior Financial Abuse and Exploitation Costs Americans $36.48 Billion per Year -- TrueLink Financial

01/28/2015

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- American seniors are losing $36.48 billion every year to senior fraud, exploitation and financial abuse—more than 12 times the most widely reported previous estimate.

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