Presentation Title

Assistive and Interactive Technology to Enhance Quality of Life and Independence for Persons with Dementia and Their Caregivers

Author ORCID Identifier

https://orcid.org/

0000-0003-3403-2054

Advisor Information

Julie Blaskewicz Boron

Location

MBSC Ballroom - Poster #605 - G

Presentation Type

Poster

Start Date

4-3-2022 12:30 PM

End Date

4-3-2022 1:45 PM

Abstract

Maintaining quality-of-life and independence are important goals for aging adults. Advancements in assistive and interactive technologies (AITs) have supported these goals by acting as physical, cognitive, and social supports for both older adults and their caregivers. They may be especially useful for persons with dementia/mild cognitive impairment (PWD/MCI). PWD/MCI are at high risk for depreciation of quality-of-life and autonomy through loss of functional ability. As such, caregivers report high rates of burnout, including physical and psychological burden, associated with increasing levels of care. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to investigate the needs, preferences, and use of AITs by caregivers of PWD/MCI. This may help inform future innovations for caregivers and the people they support. Needs assessments and focus groups reveal that participants (N=32, MAge=54.4±16.9, Female=84.4%, White=93.8%) were generally receptive of AITs. Most of the sample used one or more AITs (90.6% ); the majority used two to four (53.1%). Themes from focus groups suggest that, although interested, caregivers lack access to AITs which are easily used by their care recipients, which deters adoption. However, data also suggest that many caregivers are functional in their caregiving, and instead require personal support. Approximately one-third of participants who wanted support indicated they most needed individual counseling to help cope with giving care. This research supports that AITs for impaired populations necessitate simplicity for adoption. Additionally, these data emphasize that caregivers require greater socio-emotional support to continue to maintain their own quality-of-life and provide optimal care for aging adults.

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COinS
 
Mar 4th, 12:30 PM Mar 4th, 1:45 PM

Assistive and Interactive Technology to Enhance Quality of Life and Independence for Persons with Dementia and Their Caregivers

MBSC Ballroom - Poster #605 - G

Maintaining quality-of-life and independence are important goals for aging adults. Advancements in assistive and interactive technologies (AITs) have supported these goals by acting as physical, cognitive, and social supports for both older adults and their caregivers. They may be especially useful for persons with dementia/mild cognitive impairment (PWD/MCI). PWD/MCI are at high risk for depreciation of quality-of-life and autonomy through loss of functional ability. As such, caregivers report high rates of burnout, including physical and psychological burden, associated with increasing levels of care. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to investigate the needs, preferences, and use of AITs by caregivers of PWD/MCI. This may help inform future innovations for caregivers and the people they support. Needs assessments and focus groups reveal that participants (N=32, MAge=54.4±16.9, Female=84.4%, White=93.8%) were generally receptive of AITs. Most of the sample used one or more AITs (90.6% ); the majority used two to four (53.1%). Themes from focus groups suggest that, although interested, caregivers lack access to AITs which are easily used by their care recipients, which deters adoption. However, data also suggest that many caregivers are functional in their caregiving, and instead require personal support. Approximately one-third of participants who wanted support indicated they most needed individual counseling to help cope with giving care. This research supports that AITs for impaired populations necessitate simplicity for adoption. Additionally, these data emphasize that caregivers require greater socio-emotional support to continue to maintain their own quality-of-life and provide optimal care for aging adults.