Technological opportunities for supporting people with dementia who are living at home
Wherton JP., Monk AF.
Recent advances in pervasive computing raise new possibilities for supporting people with dementia who wish to live in their own homes. Interviews were conducted in order to identify the daily activities of people living at home that might most usefully be supported. In Study 1, nine interviews and one focus group were conducted with occupational therapists and other professional caregivers. In Study 2, interviews were conducted with eight people with mild to moderate dementia in their own homes and 10 informal caregivers. A grounded theory analysis of the transcripts revealed specific areas where support was needed and suggestions concerning the kinds of prompting and sensing required to support: dressing, taking medication, personal hygiene, preparing food, and socialising. The findings demonstrate the value of consulting directly with people with dementia and their caregivers. The design challenge is to provide flexible prompting systems that are sensitive to the intentions, capabilities, and values of their users. © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.