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OBJECTIVES

CAALYX-MV objective is to widely validate an innovative and efficient ICT-based solution focused on improving the elder’s quality of life by prolonging the time they can stay safer, autonomous and independently at home, by monitoring and controlling their social and health status and providing them with some tools and services to support their daily home-activities in terms of comfort, security, energy efficiency and communications.

CAALYX-MV SOLUTION

The already developed CAALYX-MV solution to be validated is composed by three main subsystems or components:

  • The Home system, which intends to provide a monitoring system aimed at helping the elder’s independently living at home. It consists on a PC like set top box or media center –it will depend on the devices available in the pilots’ sites- that support the connection of sensors and video cameras that may be used for monitoring and for interaction with the elder. Using the TV and (at least) a camera, the elder may establish live connections with careers, family and friends, reducing this way the isolation syndrome and other psychic disorders. The home monitoring system will be combined with Smart Home technologies to cover security at home (i.e. personal safety, gas, smoke and intrusion detection).
  • The Roaming system, intends to monitor unobtrusively the older person when carrying out his/her daily activities in an independent way, both in his home and outdoors. It comprises the Wearable Light Device (WDL), a smart textile shirt that avoids the use of cable wiring and the mobile phone –which should include GPS functionalities. The already developed WDL is able to measure specific vital signs of the elder – which depends on the possible illness they can suffer-, to detect falls and to communicate autonomously in real time with his/her caregiver in case of an emergency, wherever they are.
  • Care Services will allow the monitoring of individuals by the family, a caretaker and health services. Depending on the actors, one or other information will be delivered. It consists also on PCs, and additionally a camera if they want to be seen by the elderly through videoconferencing. The caretaker will receive alerts and evaluate whether they must be promoted to the emergency service (112).

MARKET VALIDATION

The system will be tested and validated under real usability conditions arranged through 3 pilots in different EU countries (Spain, Italy and the Netherlands), and will obtain reliable assessment by gathering real end user's feedback. The aim of the pilots is double:

  • To assess the usability and acceptability of the CAALYX-MV system by a selected target population, operating under real live conditions (the target population is composed by several actors: elderly and/or ill persons over 65 years old, their family, the teleassistance operator, and their doctor).
  • To assess the validity and reliability of the system for detecting health problems in the monitored person, avoiding false alarms and decreasing the number of admissions in the hospital, or visits to clinicians, etc.

The pilots will be implemented during two separated periods of 6 months. Improvements and enhancements will be performed between pilots taking into account user’s feedback. The final solution will be validated in a last three-month evaluation.

EXPECTED RESULTS & IMPACTS

The impact on society will revolve around the following issues:

  • Individualization. Today traditionally denser and firm social networks like family and friends have become scarcer. Single households are becoming a mainstream way of living in urban centers. Older people living alone who are unable to leave their homes and care for themselves after having accidents or rapidly deteriorating health conditions can go unnoticed for long times.
  • Population migration. By alleviating the need for the older person to relocate (e.g., to live in an elder care institution or with family members at another location), the current elder living environment is not depleted of its people. This is especially important in rural areas with a preponderance of older persons, whose desertification (of people) has a clear ecological impact.
  • Manpower. The current demographic trend makes it difficult to foresee how Europe will find enough people to take care of its older population, without a major change in traditional elderly care methods. Elder care will compete with other economic activities for resources.
  • Europe wide impact. The migration of north European retirees to areas with a milder weather is a well-known fact. The care network will be distance independent, with several entities collaborating in care delivery.

CASE STUDY / PRACTICAL EXAMPLE

Peter is 65, lives alone, in a sheltered accommodation managed by social services. He values his independence but suffers from memory loss and uses a system of notes and reminders to keep track of his activities. His son lives nearby and visits him occasionally. His friend Barry lives next door and takes the responsibility for looking after him. After getting ready for the day at 7:30, Peter fits his well-being sensors and mobile phone when getting dressed. At 8:00, his TV automatically reminds him to take his medication. At 10:00, He goes for a walk.


If his well-being sensors detected unusual conditions, a voice channel would be opened with his caretaker, and if there were an emergency, his location would be disclosed (the fall sensor is equipped with a GPS device) so that the emergency services would perform a quick rescue. If the problem arises at home, a similar alert procedure is adopted. Falls are registered by the system and a weekly log is sent to Peter’s General Practitioner who monitors his progress and evaluates his medication.


Terry monitors his dad’s progress via his TV. On Friday nights, Peter plays bingo (from his TV) with his other friends while they chat about what they have done during the week. This is conducted through an audio/video system which connects several sheltered accommodations together.


Project Name COMPLETE AMBIENT ASSISTED LIVING EXPERIMENT – MARKET VALIDATION
Project Acronym CAALYX-MV
Project Reference ICT-PSP-2009-3-250577
Total cost: €3.91m
EC funding: €1.96m
Project start date 1/2/2011
Project duration 36 months
Project Coordinator Telefónica Investigación y Desarrollo
Contact Person

Mr. Luis López de Ayala Hidalgo.

Ronda de la Comunicación s/n, Edificio Oeste 1, 4ª plan 6, 28050 Madrid, Spain.

Tel. (+34) 914832642.

E-mail: ayala at tid.es

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