Dementia sufferers get out of the home technology boost

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The Vega wrist device

People with dementia and learning difficulties are being urged to use new telecare technology that will help them to stay independent while on the move.

UK company Centra Pulse has launched a new wristwatch gadget with Finnish technology firm Everon which will support older and disabled people when they leave their home.

The Vega brings emergency care and support directly to the wearer by instantly tracking their location and connecting them with a trained care professional at Centra Pulse’s monitoring centre. It can even be used to trigger an alert to Centra Pulse if someone strays beyond a preset area.

Telecare technology is currently more widely used within in-home devices like personal alarms and fall detector sensors which help people stay more independent at home, including 100,000 Centra Pulse customers,. The new device uses a GPS tracking system and mobile communication to provide the same support while wearers are out and about.

Wendy Darling, Managing Director of Centra Pulse, said: “We are urging anyone with experience of longterm conditions like dementia to take advantage of new telecare technology that could improve their quality of life outside of the home. It will also offer much-needed reassurance to families and carers.

“We have developed the technology we offer to give more reassurance, freedom and independence to the users and relatives we support. By ensuring they can be instantly located and provided with immediate care in an emergency, new devices like the Vega allow more vulnerable people to leave the home, explore their surroundings and take up more active hobbies.”

It follows evidence released by the Cochrane Collaboration last year which found that exercise can improve the thinking abilities and everyday life of people with dementia. Figures from the Alzheimer’s Society suggest the number of people suffering from dementia is set to rise from 800,000 people to 1.7 million by 2050.

The Vega is now available from Centra Pulse for around £30 a month.

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