New technology has made it possible for adult children to monitor to a stunningly precise degree the daily movements and habits of their elderly.
A spectrum of companies from giants to start ups has developed a system to notify families if love ones haven’t taken their medicine, are looking for a piece of the market of families with an aging relative.
The system called Grand Care produced by a company of the same name. It allows families to place movement sensors throughout a house. Information is sent out via e-mail, text message or voice mail.
The system cost US $8,000 dollars about as much as 2 months at the local assisted living facility plus monthly fees of US $75 dollars. The system helps assuage that midlife sense of guilt.
“I have a large amount of guilt,” Michael Murdoch admitted who has availed the system and who reviewed it from his home office in suburban Denver. “I’m really far away. I’m not helping to take care of her, to mow her lawn, to be a good son.”
His mother, Mrs. Roach was adamant in using the system because of privacy concern but she has changed her stand when she has found out that it was not.
Nancy K. Schlossberg, a counseling psychologist at the University of Maryland compared monitoring technology for the elderly people to the infamous “nanny cams”, hidden cameras some parents use to spy on baby sitters.
“There’s something about it that’s very offensive,” she said.
Rachel Meyers, 45, of Brooklyn, 45, Brooklyn. When her mother, who just turn 84 and lives with her husband in Minneapolis, developed kidney disease, Rachel and her far flung siblings worried about how to ensure that she was taking the regimen of pills needed daily for her condition.
With medication management system called MedMinder, it is basically a computerized pillbox, that arrange in boxes. The correct daily dosages of her mother’s 10 different medications. If it is time to take them, the pillbox beeps and flashes.
If she takes them, Ms. Meyers gets a phone call in Brooklyn saying, essentially, Mom took her pills. Her siblings, including a brother who lives in Australia,get email notifications.
But if her mother doesn’t take the pills within a two hour window, the system starts nagging. It calls her. It flashes and beeps. Then Ms. Meyers gets a phone call in New York with a message saying her mother missed her dose.
Usually it all works out. But when her mother’s routine changes and her children neglect to reprogram the pillbox, problem’s arise.
In an interview, Ms. Rachel Meyers’s mother, Harriet Meyers, said, she appreciates the contraption, she said that she was rebellious at first but now she look at it differently, she is now hooked, said she.