Assistive Living

There are 15 million reasons why IoT is increasingly essential in the future wellbeing of the population of the UK.

It is an undeniable fact that as a population we are living longer and whilst not everyone over the age of 65 may require additional care, at some point, particularly as life expectancy increases, the ability to live independent of a care infrastructure will be questioned. Similarly, as our population grows so does the number of dependents requiring assistance with their everyday living and with increasing demands upon Healthcare and Social services, alternative means of assistance and support become increasingly valuable. By 2025, it is estimated that over 15 million UK adults will be either over 65 or have a disability that requires some form of support (The Lancet vol 2, issue 7, 2017*) and IoT can play a major role in not only easing demands on the Social Care infrastructure, but in enabling individuals to enjoy the freedom of independent living and to participate in community life.

Drawing on over 10 years’ experience of Telehealth and Telecare products and services, IRIS IoT Solutions is harnessing this with its expertise in LTE and LoRa WAN Industrial and Workplace IoT implementations, to create a real difference in the approach to Assistive Living. Responsible deployment of unobtrusive sensors can inform on a variety of everyday activities e.g. recording movement to establish that people are active or raising alerts in the event of a sudden fall; capturing essential food preparation activity to ensure that people are eating properly and environmental monitoring for maintaining healthy and safe living temperatures and air quality. However, as commented by Stephen Westley, IRIS Director:

We have most of the components for a perfect At Home or In Care Assistive Living Service available to us now and are currently undertaking a number of programs in Sheltered Accommodation and Housing Associations. However, our previous experience has taught us two major factors – wearables are great, but people do not necessarily like wearing them i.e. it signifies them as ‘requiring assistance’ and as one of the first companies to introduce a pendant personal alarm to the UK we fully understand this. The second is that ‘one size doesn’t fit all’ i.e. we all have our individual nuances and patterns to our lifestyle and for an Assistive Living Program to be effective, it must take count of this. And so, the final two pieces to our jigsaw puzzle are well underway – An Indoor Fall Monitor and the personalisation of the solution using AI and machine learning, so that we can respond to the behaviour and lifestyle of the individual, not the masses – these will be completed and our Assistive Living Care package perfected early in 2020.

IoT is credited as leading the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it may well also be credited with leading the revolution in Social Care that will release millions of individuals from the prospect of institutional existence into a more self-sustaining and fulfilling independent way of living.

For updates on IRIS Assistive Living Program follow: www.facebook.com/IRIS-IOT-Solutions

*Forecasted trends in disability and life expectancy in England and Wales up to 2025: a modelling study.