Older adults invited to trial new technologies in their home to help support independent living

Older adults invited to trial new technologies in their home to help support independent living

An innovative technology system, The NEX system, developed by researchers at Dublin City University to support older adults to live independently at home for as long as possible is ready to be trialled in homes across Dublin.

The NEX trial team collaborated with older adults to identify user needs to inform the design and early testing of the technology system. The system uses a combination of technologies, such as voice activated assistants, wearable devices and ambient sensors to collect data that can be used to identify and feedback patterns and changes in an individual’s routine. Feedback may be used to prompt changes in behaviour or may be indicative of a person becoming unwell or that support is required. 

The project is being led by researchers at the Centre for e-Integrated Care (CeIC) and the Insight SFI Research Centre for Data Analytics at Dublin City University, in partnership with Irish technology companies, Davra and Danalto. It is hoped these technology solutions will facilitate older adults to live independently at home and facilitate self-management and support from carers where required in a non-intrusive manner.

In a rapidly ageing population, new and efficient ways of using technology to preserve independence and maintain quality of life and safety are required. Speaking about the importance of the system developed, Dr Catriona Murphy, Assistant Professor in Community Health, School of Nursing, Psychotherapy and Community Health and the trial Principal Investigator said, 

“Imagine a future in which we live longer at home with assistance from technology that can enhance communication, enable self-monitoring and securely share information with our network of care givers in order to preserve our independence and improve our quality of life. That is the future we are imagining with the NEX system.

This is the final phase of the project where we aim to trial the NEX system in the homes of older adults. This is a great opportunity for anyone over 60 years of age and living within the Dublin region to test this system in their home and see how it could benefit them.”

Approximately 30 older adults aged 60 years or older, living alone in the greater Dublin area, fully vaccinated against Covid-19 (including booster dose) and have a home broadband connection, will be considered for the trial. They will be given an opportunity to test the NEX system in their home environment for a ten-week period.  

More about the Nex project can be found here. Those interested in taking part can email nex@dcu.ie