AI and the Elderly: Maybe AI bots can do better than humans?

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Elderly people need take care and the truth is that most of them don’t have one – they live alone and that leads to not just physical health issues, but mental as well.

Can AI bots take better care of the elderly folks? Apparently it seems so !

1. Washington State University tests 'Robot Activity Support System' for elderly care

Currently, an estimated 50 percent of adults over the age of 85 need assistance with every day activities such as preparing meals and taking medication and the annual cost for this assistance in the US is nearly $2 trillion.

With the number of adults over 85 expected to triple by 2050 in US robot activity support can ease the burden on US healthcare system to some extent.

The Robot Activity Support System, or RAS, uses sensors embedded in a WSU smart home to determine where its residents are, what they are doing and when they need assistance with daily activities.

It navigates through rooms and around obstacles to find people on its own, provides video instructions on how to do simple tasks and can even lead its owner to objects like their medication or a snack in the kitchen.

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2. BUDDY, is the buddy of elderly people !

A report from the US Administration on Aging reports that more than 30%, well over 11.M adults, live alone in US!

Social isolation and loneliness though are associated with a greater risk of dying in elderly, it is the isolation which is more important.

"One of the reasons we developed BUDDY, the companion robot, was our belief that BUDDY would be an excellent companion for senior citizens.  

BUDDY can ensure the well-being of senior citizens at home by providing social interaction and assistance, can remind them about upcoming events, appointments and deliveries.  

In addition, on behalf of care givers, BUDDY can monitor the homes of seniors who choose to live alone. He can detect falls and unusual activity and provide medication reminders. I

n addition, BUDDY can ease loneliness by seniors with social interaction. With BUDDY, seniors can access communication technology, like Skype and Facetime, with much more simplicity."

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3. Mabu – A robot companion and healthcare aid for the elderly

Most of the developed nations are facing an accurate shortage of people who can take care of elderly people in the healthcare system.

Mabu is a robot which can monitor health, read facial expressions and emotions and send the encrypted data to the concerned doctor for decision making.

While a healthcare provider might be out of reach for many, a robot like Mabu can surely fit in to many homes.

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4. Loneliness has a cure, in terms of robots, for those over 65 years of age

Rise in elderly population has become a 'democratic time bomb' in many countries. 

People over the age of 65 are chronically lonely, having no one to even share a laugh.

Robots are being developed where, they can be a companion to such elderly people.

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5. Japan is relying on robots for the care of it's aging citizens

Soft fluffy robots, with sensors inbuilt and who response on touch are the new companions of elderly population of Japan.

Paro is one such robot which is is proving extremely helpful specially in care of dementia patients.

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