Explore assistive robotics for eldercare in response to aging populations.
MIT Hacking Medicine Robotics Singapore 2017 is Asia’s first hackathon to address unmet needs in elderly care and medicine and explore how robotics can play a role in aiding an aging society.
The hackathon saw 83 participants, including clinicians, programmers and engineers, work on addressing a diverse range of eldercare challenges from fall prevention to dementia care. The hackathon was officiated by Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister-In-Charge of the Smart Nation Initiative, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan.
Singapore has one of the fastest ageing populations in the world. This has far-reaching implications as it places unprecedented demands on the provision of health care and ageing-related services as there are concerns with manpower shortages. The number of nursing homes is likely to grow to cater to the elderly who require residential care that cannot be given at home. Currently, about 50% of the nursing home residents are wheelchair bound and do not have the capability of moving around independently. As such, about 10% of staff time is spent moving residents around. This time could be better used to provide quality care, organize and running activities, and interact with the residents.
Our proposed solution is to take over this function using the “Botler: The Autonomous Mobility Solution” in the nursing homes. The Autonomous Wheelchair Transporter incorporates Segway Robotics’ Loomo with its facial recognition algorithms to accurately identify specific residents with a novel electromagnetic coupling device and facility mapping of each nursing home facility to move the residents around for their daily activities, such as meals, recreation, therapy sessions, etc. This will increase productivity and allow staff more time to perform tasks that require a human.
Highlight Reel from SMART.