Front Porch: Thinking Outside the Box to Help Seniors Live Well

| October 04, 2012

CAST Sponsor Front Porch is “thinking outside the box,” according to , a senior housing blog.

Since 2008, The Front Porch Center for Technology Innovation and Wellbeing (CTIW) has dedicated itself to 1 simple mission:
finding technology solutions that help seniors live well. 

Front Porch, a CAST Patron (formerly provider Sponsor) in
Burbank, CA, is "thinking outside the box," according to Senior Housing Forum, a senior housing blog. "We depend on innovators like
the Front Porch Center to help us to continue improving
our care."

4 Years of Technology Exploration

Front Porch began its technology exploration in 2008 by testing
the then-emerging Dakim Brain Fitness technology. It then launched
the largest Dakim installation in the country.

Today, CTIW is working with corporate and university partners on
a variety of technology initiatives.

For example, the Minding our Meds initiative is testing whether
cell phone text messaging is an effective way to remind seniors to
take their medications. The center is hoping that text messaging
will bring about better medication compliance and a higher level of
dignity among its users. The Center for Technology and Aging in
Oakland, CA, is funding the initiative.

CTIW is also working with the University of California, Davis
Health System and the California Telehealth Network to develop a
Model eHealth Community for Aging (MeHCA). The center is hoping
that technology will help improve the health of low-income older
adults living in the Koreatown neighborhood of Los Angeles. 

The
project's high-tech tools include broadband-enabled telehealth,
remote monitoring, medication management, computer-based health
education, the Nintendo Wii and Dakim Brain Fitness. United
Healthcare is funding the initiative.

"We must rethink models of care that go beyond hospital, clinic
or ER visits, to home and community-based care models that allow
for prevention, early detection, behavior change and social
support," says Brian Egan, chief executive officer of Advantage Home Telehealth, a CAST member and a MeHCA partner. "This
initiative with the Front Porch Center for Technology Innovation
and Wellbeing is aimed at accelerating just that. Controlling
health care costs while bringing quality care to an increasingly
aging population is one of our nation's most significant
challenges."

Dreaming about the Future

CTIW President and CAST Commissioner Kari Olson told Senior
Housing Forum
that she looks forward to a future in which:

  • The health care system will be integrated and
    Internet-based.
  • Everything and everyone will be connected through tablets,
    desktop computers, laptops, smartphones and/or monitoring
    devices.
  • Caregivers, residents and families will be interconnected. 
  • There will be "rings of people and services" that will meet
    physical, emotional and even financial needs of seniors.
  • Seniors will have more options rather than fewer.