In Late 2018, the Cox Foundation and Cox Enterprises provided a grant of $23.7 million to Emory Brain Health Center and Georgia Tech to build an innovative program that will empower individuals (fellows) with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), a condition that currently affects 20 percent of Americans over age 65. The Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) Empowerment Program will combine research, clinical care, fellow and care partner support, while empowering patients to take an active role in their health and wellness and providing much needed respite to their care partners. The program will include a therapeutic day program for participants and caregivers, new technologies and innovations, research outcomes based on real-world function and an environment that empowers individuals and their families to take control over their health.
Aware Home / IPaT researchers are considering the necessary information and tools that are needed to empower fellows and their care partners at home, while informing the program staff, who determine what therapeutic training and activities to provide for the fellows and care partners. With the Patient and Family Advisory Board, the technology team is examining the needs for both gathering activity information that may help identify important changes and to determine what tools may support fellows in their daily home routines. The team is then selecting technology solutions that show promise for meeting the needs from both a user perspective and the perspective of the therapeutic team. The Aware Home plays a key role in this technology evaluation process, allowing the team to test installation requirements, determine if the technology meets these needs, as well as demonstrate the value to fellows/carepartners and the therapeutic team. This technology will then be integrated with the larger platform of the program, refined for deployment and tracking, and installed in the homes of fellows enrolled in the MCIEP.
Generally, people spend a good amount of time in their home performing everyday activities like: sleeping, eating, cooking, relaxing, entertaining, and so on; thus, it comes as no surprise that the home plays a key role in our health, lifestyle, and well-being. The Aware Home Research Initiative (AHRI) at Georgia Institute of Technology is an interdisciplinary research endeavor aimed at addressing the fundamental technical, design, and social challenges for people in a home setting. Central to this research is the Aware Home, a 3-story, 5040 square foot facility designed to facilitate research, while providing an authentic home environment. Research domains include: 1. Health and Well-being, 2. Sustainability, 3. Entertainment, 4. Connected Living / Home Management.