Alma, Ark. – November 29, 2016 – InvoTek, Inc., a research and development company in Alma, Arkansas, and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) received a $177,007 research grant from the National Institute on Aging to create a low-cost training app to help home-based individuals care for elders with dementia. InvoTek engineers will develop the app and UAMS clinicians will evaluate its use with Arkansas elders.
“Alzheimer’s affects approximately 54,000 Arkansans and over 5 million people nationwide,” said Pao-Feng Tsai, RN, PhD, the Alice An-Loh Sun Endowed Professor in Geriatric Nursing. “This app may help thousands of elders with dementia stay in their homes longer, extending their quality of life and postponing the move to expensive long-term care facilities.”
The Android-based app will feature a video simulator that teaches proven caregiving strategies that help elders to complete activities such as dressing, bathing, and grooming as independently as possible.
According to Tom Jakobs, InvoTek’s President, “We used an early prototype of the simulator to train nursing home caregivers and we saw very encouraging improvements in their residents’ ability to perform activities such as dressing themselves.”
InvoTek expects to complete the development and evaluation of the new training app in summer of 2017.Founded in 1988, InvoTek specializes in creating and applying technology to the needs of people with severe disabilities. It has received over $6 million in federal research grants since its founding. InvoTek is a founding sponsor of Be Extraordinary, a non-profit organization that helps people with severe disabilities who want to accomplish a life goal.