Systems for Safe Living
The result is the ConnectCare Senior Monitoring System from Warrendale, Pa.-based NewCare Solutions, which consists of a communication box that is connected to a phone line or Internet modem, wireless “plug and play” sensors for appliances and beds—others for cooking activities and water consumption will be available soon—and the online Caregiver Portal, which allows caregivers to monitor activities and set thresholds for automatic notification via phone, text or e-mail if they are surpassed. A smart-phone app is also available. “An Alert Sentry PERS can also be incorporated into the system in case someone falls and needs to contact the call center for help,” says Kaigler, the company’s president and CEO. “Caregivers are notified of that, as well.”
One thing that’s important when it comes to home monitoring systems is that they not be invasive, according to Mark Hanson, cofounder and head of technology and product at BeClose, which is located in Vienna, Va., and sells through authorized affiliates. “Our system is meant to be passive and invisible in the home,” he says. “Most of our users tend to forget the sensors are even there.”
These wireless pressure and motion sensors monitor beds, doors, chairs, toilets, water usage and room activity, beaming data to a base station that only needs to be plugged into an electrical socket—no phone or Internet connection is required—that’s also equipped with a battery for power outages. The system also has a large BeClose Button that can be placed beside the tub, etc., and a pendant that can be worn for emergency calls. Caregivers establish parameters and receive alerts by phone, e-mail or text, allowing them to access the online BeClose Dashboard to review user activities.