New Technology Lifts Elderly Caregiving Burden

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BeClose “intelligent algorithms” offer meaningful information about aging loved ones--when you need it the most

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BeClose

At BeClose, we know that state-of-the-art technology can take families from a state of fear and crisis management to a truly collaborative, connected way of caregiving.

"Is Mom sleeping well?" "Did Dad wander outside in the middle of the night?" "What if my aunt isn’t well, but doesn’t want to be a burden? She has a panic button, but what if she can’t or won’t push it if she needs help?" "How will I know if my grandmother is really okay—or just telling me what I want to hear?"

BeClose, the affordable wireless technology system which provides safety and independence for the elderly, hears from caregivers every day about the stress and strain of the responsibilities of caring for aging loved ones. Comprised of a base unit and wireless sensors placed throughout the house, BeClose offers caregivers the peace of mind of knowing that their elderly family members are going through daily routines and that nothing is urgent or out of the ordinary.

Today, the company is unveiling new features, including a web-based caregiving dashboard, which makes BeClose the first in the field to offer actionable, common-sense interpretations of what’s going on in their elderly loved ones’ homes presented in a way that gives caregivers quick and easy snapshots of in-home activity. Clients will now be given user-friendly summaries of trends in sleeping, eating, and activity levels.

“Caregivers can rest assured that we’ll let them know if something important happens,” says Liddy Manson, President of BeClose. “The entire reason for BeClose’s existence is to answer the stark needs of caregivers, while providing the elderly the life at home they desire. We set out to create an affordable system that gives the information every caregiver needs—that their mom or dad is safe. And if anything is amiss, they’ll find out immediately. We take reams of raw data, and make sense of it so that caregivers don’t have to.”

Once installed, the BeClose system of wireless sensors spends two weeks learning about the resident’s activities and patterns (eating, sleeping, comings and goings), and determines his or her typical routine. Using that data, the dashboard will report any changes in routine to the caregiver—either events that need immediate attention, or more subtle changes over time that might be important.

Example of BeClose Intelligent Algorithm at work:

Your mother usually:

  •     Sleeps from about 11 PM to 6 AM;
  •     Takes a 2 hour afternoon nap
  •     Leaves the house on average 3 times a day
  •     Opens her refrigerator 5 times in a 24 hour period
  •     Makes one trip to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

Using this data, the BeClose intelligent algorithm knows to let you know if something is out of the norm – on the dashboard with alerts in red (causes of concern), yellow (notable events), or green (routine events). If it’s a red alert, caregivers also receive a text, email, or phone call.

In a time when nursing home care averages $77,000 a year, assisted living costs $200 per day, and live-in nurses can cost thousands per month, BeClose is determined to help the elderly live at home for as long as they can.

BeClose cost savings
A recent report found that BeClose system will allow US families to keep their older family members at home for 2 years longer than they would have otherwise, realizing significant savings for the family. (See box.)

Personal Emergency Response Systems (“I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!” buttons) might seem like an easy solution. But they usually fail in real-life situations—either because the elderly person isn’t wearing the button, is too disoriented to push it, or is reluctant to call 911 and summon an ambulance and all of the commotion that comes with it. A 2008 study suggests that residents fail to push their buttons in 80% of accidents, a staggering failure rate.

“At BeClose, we know that state-of-the-art technology can take families from a state of fear and crisis management to a truly collaborative, connected way of caregiving. Residents can have the independence they desire, while receiving a safety net broader and more user-friendly than anything previously available,” says Manson.

About BeClose™
BeClose™ is a breakthrough remote home monitoring system designed to allow people to age in place independently while giving their family members and caregivers the peace of mind of knowing that they are safe. The system of wireless sensors is fully customizable and tech-friendly, and is based on a research and development partnership with Alarm.com, the nation's leading in-home wireless monitoring system, serving more than 500,000 homes and businesses nationwide. BeClose headquarters are outside of Washington, DC. For more information, visit http://www.beclose.com

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Emily Bloch
BeClose
413-549-3950
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