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Fall Detection: A Solution for Independent Living

Fall Detection: A Solution for Independent Living

One-third of all senior citizens over the age of 65 have reported falling down. Two-thirds of those who fall will do so again within 6 months. One-fourth of seniors who fracture a hip from a fall will succumb to the injury within 6 months. These alarming statistics alone have given birth to a ‘medical alert system’ industry catering to an expanding demographic of senior citizens, to whom the most profound effect of falling is the loss of functioning associated with independent living.

The modern world we live in today arguably promotes individualistic thinking and self-sufficient living. Corresponding to changing times and culture, most seniors often prefer or find themselves living by themselves away from their children and families. While sentiments remain perfectly aligned in terms of independence, their physical health might be far from adjusting accordingly. Most elderly people resist surrendering to assistance for trivial tasks simply because they are no longer able to do so themselves.

We often find the rapidly developing field of technology something hard to keep up with when in reality the converse proves to be true. The standard of living has an exponential rate of growth and without constant technological development, this would have been impossible to accomplish. One such crucial requirement in healthcare was addressed by ‘Guarday’ in provisioning the ‘SOS Fall Detection Device’.

Guarday fashioned a fall detection device that can instantly detect when a user falls down and calls for assistance. The device is discrete in design and can be worn around the neck, below the shirt or jacket, on the belt or even attached to a bag inside or out. The device has a manual SOS button designed to trigger an auto-alert process with a short response time. Auto-alert immediately calls the first pre-nominated number within 10 to 15 seconds and also sends out the user’s location details via SMS to all pre-nominated numbers. In case the nature of the fall is severe which makes the user unconscious with no movement for up to 10 seconds, the device then automatically send a fall alert with the user’s location to all pre-nominated numbers via SMS and initiate a call to the first number.

A senior patient’s stay at the hospital suffering from a fall is generally twice as long as seniors admitted for other ailments. Most common falls occur in the bathroom resulting in the hospitalization of the elderly. Other minor instances include falling off the bed or sofa which can still leave the person lying for hours on the floor unable to move. These incidents often leave seniors severely injured, distraught, less confident about living alone essentially due to restricted mobility thereafter. These fears soon materialize in less activity leading to muscle reduction, therefore, increasing the chances of another fall. Guarday SOS Fall Detection Device ensures assistance in case of emergency and helps restore the senior citizen’s sense of security and self-confidence. This device has proven to be useful for Alzheimer-Dementia patients and also for people suffering from Diabetes.

 

Guarday SOS Fall Detection Device

Features Limitations
Portable False detection if not mounted on proper/recommended surface
Sensitive fall detection system Not waterproof
Does not track user 24/7 Answering service of pre-nominated numbers has to be disabled at all times
Standalone device (does not require a phone or application)  
900mAh Li-ion battery with motion detection  
Water resistant  
SOS button  
Works in 89 countries  
Light and discrete in design  

 

Most seniors are hesitant in using modern technology, therefore, a similar functioning application on a smartphone even with additional features might not be an appropriate solution for this particular problem. A simplistic approach is just what is needed and Guarday has succeeded in developing one in my opinion. Various unavoidable circumstances contribute to living alone for many senior citizens where such a solution can bring about a sense of security and assurance to them and their families.


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