Technology Aiding Alzheimer’s Patients

Kaiser Health News, in collaboration with The Washington Post, reports on “high-tech but simple devices”

According to a new report by Kaiser Health news, simple devices are giving older people a better chance at independence later in life as pilot projects in homes and retirement communities see if these approaches can lead to improved at-home patient monitoring.

The goal of the efforts experts note is to help control problems before they escalate and cut back on the need for costly long-term care and hospital admissions.  Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease is a leading cause of the need for costly long-term care according to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance.

An estimated 5.3 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease including about 200,000 Americans under the age of 65 the organization notes.  Alzheimer’s generally creates the most cost of all long-term care insurance claims the Association notes.

A report notes that therapy with MP3 players such as iPods allows stroke victims or patients with Alzheimer’s to better interact with others.  Caregivers have observed for decades that Alzheimer’s patients can still remember and sing songs long after they’ve stopped recognizing names and faces.

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