GrandCare featured in The Guardian UK as a leading technology for aging

Ask Jack

What tech can I use to keep an eye on an ageing parent?

Stephen’s mother lives alone, and he would like some way of knowing that she’s OK, without her losing any of her freedom or independence

 

My mum is in her mid-sixties, and lives alone. She’s very active, but naturally we worry about things like: what if she falls or is otherwise incapacitated and can’t get to a phone? She has a Moto G (Android), so I’ve been looking for an app that can run in the background and notify me if certain conditions are met. Say, for example, she doesn’t use her phone for 24 hours. I’ve found one called Man Down, which I thought might do the job, but it would require her to log into the app regularly and set it up. I was looking for a “set it and forget it” solution. I’ve also searched for an IFTTT script – say, alert me if she doesn’t log into Facebook for a day – but with no success.

I’m looking for a light-touch solution. She’s not elderly, and I don’t want her to feel like she’s losing any freedom or independence. Do you have any suggestions? Stephen

Countries in the developed world, particularly Japan, have aging populations, and monitoring the safety of older people is becoming a big business. It’s a market that American companies such as GrandCare Systems...are already addressing. The New York Times ran an interesting story about the subject: Technologies Help Adult Children Monitor Aging Parents. However, most require monthly payments, and I haven’t seen any similar services in the UK.

Your mother will probably have heard of Age UK’s service, it retains her independence, isn’t intrusive, and would be entirely under her control. However, it’s relatively expensive, and it doesn’t do very much in comparison with American systems like GrandCare. That would allow you to monitor your mother’s weight and blood pressure, track her movements around the house, and know when she opened the fridge door, for example…

The cost depends on the features, and most are simpler and cheaper. However, a comprehensive system may well be worth the money if it enables an older person to continue living independently at home (in the US jargon, “aging in place“) rather than being moved to a care home

 

Read the entire article here

 

GrandCare Systems starts at just $699 to install with a low recurring subscription charge.

Buy NOW

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