Virtual Reality Starts Expanding Horizons in Assisted Living

Unfortunately, some seniors living in assisted living communities will never be able to complete all of the travel items on their bucket lists.

That’s where Rendever Health, a startup helmed by two graduate students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management, comes in.

Rendever is developing virtual reality software for Samsung Gear VR headsets that is meant to be used in assisted living communities, co-founders Reed Hayes and Dennis Lally tell Senior Housing News.

With their technology, assisted living residents can once again walk down the street where they grew up, finally stand underneath the Eiffel Tower, or even skydive from a plane thousands of feet in the air—all without leaving their chair, much less their assisted living community.

So far, Rendever’s virtual reality programming has been used in a couple of facilities around the country, Lally says—and it has received a warm reception.

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Ideas for serving your aging community

In my last posting (What’s all this about Livability and Age-friendliness, May 2016) I talked about the broad ideas of what livability and age-friendliness mean. I described the World Health Organization’s (WHO) and AARP’s recognition that throughout the world we are getting older. WHO states that “the number of people aged 65 or older is projected to grow from an estimated 524 million in 2010 to nearly 1.5 billion in 2050 (WHO).” This age distribution will never reverse to a point where there will be greater numbers of younger people as compared to older people. We are headed into a permanent state of agedness. The question then becomes – how to plan for this in a thoughtful way.

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Therapists kept busy in Sun Country

The Regional Therapy Department for the Sun Country Health Region has a wide range of services available to residents of the southeast area with the goal to improve their quality of life in whatever health circumstance they might find themselves, members of the Weyburn Rotary Club heard at their luncheon on Thursday. Natalie Bieberdorf, the regional director of therapy services for Sun Country, spoke about the range of services and the needs that her staff members are serving. Mainly there are physiotherapists and occupational therapists, with specialized areas such as pediatric therapists who deal with those with physical or cognitive deficiencies or disabilities, dementia and degenerative diseases such as ALS and multiple sclerosis.

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Series of fall prevention workshops being held for senior citizens

Misericordia University is holding a series of nine free fall prevention workshops beginning in September as part of a National Fall Prevention project. The second annual program begins Thursday, Sept. 22 and runs from 9-11 a.m. at John J. Passan Hall, home of the College of Health Sciences and Education at 100 Lake St., Dallas.

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Lifelong-learning seniors looking for new classroom

POCATELLO — Many college towns like Pocatello have groups dedicated to providing life-long education to its senior citizens.

Pocatello’s group, New Knowledge Adventures, is looking for a new location to host its large classes following a decision made by Idaho State University to relocate the group from its previous home in the Continuing Education building located near Pocatello City Hall.

According to Scott Rasmussen, the dean at Idaho State University’s College of Technology, the reasoning involves the Idaho Legislature approving various line items for career and professional technical education.

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Why doesn’t Medicare cover more for physical therapy?

If the powers that be are looking at health outcomes when they spend Medicare dollars, why did Congress decide in 2008 that a cut in therapy benefits was a smart thing to do? In 2008, I was not yet 65, so I didn’t notice this change. But now that I am past 65 and having balance “issues,” the 2008 cut in therapy benefits does affect me. One of the leading causes of sending seniors into assisted care facilities is balance issues (falls), and many seniors soon run out of funds and have to rely upon Medicaid to pay for housing them in these facilities. Is it not more fiscally responsible to spend a few thousand dollars on balance therapy now rather than tens of thousands of dollars each month to “house” seniors in such facilities?

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Elder care on-demand: why tech is setting its sights on your parents

When Alan’s wife, Toby, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s four years ago, the retired geophysicist turned to a not-for-profit in Palo Alto, California – called Avenidas Village – for guidance. Through Avenidas, Alan learned about several online platforms that connect individuals who need home care with workers who provide it.

Now, once a week, Alan opens his Windows PC and logs onto the website of a company called Honor, which lets him summon a “CarePro” the way you would call an Uber. These “nice young women”, usually nursing students, look after Toby while Alan goes to attend a lecture or to rehearse with one of several chamber music groups, for which he plays violin.

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Aging in place concept has been oversold, professor argues

Aging-in-place may not be all it’s cracked up to be.

That’s the view of a University of Florida professor of gerontology, who argues that the popular notion that older people are better off remaining in their homes may be simplistic — a view summed up by the sentiment, “I’d rather rot in my own home.”

Yet professor Stephen M. Golant, whose academic career has balanced geography and aging, says in a new book that the concept of aging-in-place has become a mantra in recent years that might prevent older adults from seeking healthier, more holistic alternatives.

Posted by editor on Mon, 22 Aug 2016 11:08 | Permalink

Program helps families 'talk about driving' with seniors

When Elizabeth Kennedy's 84-year-old father was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease two years ago, she removed the car keys from his Johnstown, Pennsylvania home and his Volkswagen Passat from the driveway. Despite warnings from his four children and his doctor, any opportunity to get behind the wheel would have proven too tempting for Kennedy's newly widowed dad.

"He was convinced he was a perfectly good driver, and he took it like he was being attacked," she said. "My father didn't understand why we told him he couldn't drive anymore."

Posted by editor on Fri, 29 Jul 2016 15:07 | Permalink

Elderly population rising, prone to neurological diseases

Aurangabad: In Marathwada, around 20% of the people between the age group of 50 and 80 years suffer from one or more neurological diseases, including stroke, dementia and Parkinson's, experts said at a patient education programme organised to mark the World Brain Day on Thursday..

As per the World Federation of Neurology report, the global share of older population (aged 60 and above) is more than 800 million (12% of the population) and is expected to reach above two billion (21% of the population) by 2050.

Posted by editor on Fri, 29 Jul 2016 15:07 | Permalink