Please enable JavaScript to experience the full functionality of GMX.

Robots could soon be caring for dementia patients

A report has suggested that robots could soon be caring for dementia parents.

The Lancet Commission report on dementia prevention, treatment and care claims "technological innovations" need to be used with caution to prevent dementia sufferers from "potentially unsafe devices".

Professor Clive Ballard of Exeter University, the study co-author, said: "There might be some potential in robots but my worry would be if people started using that as a substitute for face-to-face care. Personal interaction is a human need and advancements in technology won't work unless you also have that human element."

And a part of the report read: "Advances in the use and application of technological innovations might help people with dementia to live in safe, stimulating, and functionally enabling environments, and support and assist carers and professionals in improving quality of care.

"However, evidence on the effectiveness for most devices is not available. Caution is therefore needed to protect people with dementia from overselling of ineffective and potentially unsafe devices."

It comes after it was revealed a £15,000 robot designed to help dementia sufferers is being trialled in the Stockport area of Manchester, England.

Andy Bleaden, Funding and Programmes Manager at Stockport council, said: "We want to bring in a reminiscence tool that uses pictures from family photographs, weddings, holidays ... Someone will be able to look at photos from Christmas ten years ago. Then Mario would say, 'Can you remember where this is? Can you remember who this is?' and be able to listen to the response.

"Part of the work we'd have to do is populate the photos with data of where and when they were taken and who is in them. People can then use the software to keep their remembrance skills going. People want to be able to ask what the weather is. That's a big thing in England. They want to be able to ask the time."

Sponsored Content