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How to improve the frailty of the elderly with video games

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The covid-19 pandemic has caused more pre-frail people to be confined to their homes. Telecare is now more necessary than ever.

The objective of the frAAgiLe project, developed by the eVIDA group at the University of Deusto, is to detect the level of frailty of the elderly, even at home. Depending on the resulting level, also assign different mental and physical training plans to improve that level.

With this project, the level of frailty is measured with almost no human intervention, both in terms of mental and physical frailty of the elderly. A value is placed on that risk and an inexpensive and unobtrusive intervention is offered using tablets and other smart devices.

Detection and stimulation of cognitive impairment through serious games is also an important part of the platform. In addition, the system promotes exercises to improve the level of risk of frailty.

For this, a B2B platform installed and integrated by service providers (home care agencies, health services, telecare companies, etc.) has been created at the homes of its users.

The exercises are offered through videos and interactive gamified activities with which users perform the exercises better and using a camera and a bracelet to analyze how they perform those exercises.

The system uses a tablet with a camera to offer the training plan and capture all the information from the smartphone. The tablet includes an accessible and usable application that also has suggestions for healthy living activities for the elderly, including serious game sessions for the detection and training of cognitive and physical impairment.

Three games have been developed for tablets: SAPA, for cognitive development; Chop it !, for the stimulation of healthy and important nutrition for fragile and pre-fragile states; and Sailgility, focused on physical activity around the sailing environment.

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frAAgiLe represents a key contribution to the European R&D environment, as prevention is becoming a priority. And frailty is gaining importance due to its status as a trigger for more serious health and well-being problems on an individual and systemic level.

Future development of the platform

The system is expected to be implemented in several European countries, in addition to those already included in the consortium. Care centers in Portugal, France and Italy are becoming interested in him.

The project has measured the sensitivity, precision, usability, acceptance and ease of use of the system with the participation of users of very diverse characteristics to obtain a representative and complete vision of the value of the frAAgiLe system for users compared to practice standard.

Specifically, during comparative clinical studies, almost all digital characteristics of the frAAgiLe platform (i.e., grip strength, gait speed, and assessment of depression and cognitive states) will be cross-validated.

Using external reference measures such as the dynamometer, the geriatric depression scale and the gait speed assessment test).

For this first version, the system is offering results to professionals, who will be able to send their recommendations through messages through the platform.

In the next version, the system will be able to offer, thanks to an artificial intelligence module, individualized options on different exercises, games and lifestyle recommendations aimed at addressing your specific strengths and weaknesses. It is also expected to have access to a mat in which users work the balance to offer it as an optional device.

This project has had the participation of Serhii Shapoval, Juan Alberto Monasterio, Izai Landa and Alberto Miranda.

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original.

The European AAL program has financed the “frAAgiLe” project, led by the Basque company Ideable and with an international consortium.

Amaia Mendez-Zorrilla, Antonia Moreno Cano, Félix Colás Loricera and Ibon Oleagordia Ruiz do not receive salaries, nor do they carry out consulting work, nor do they own shares, nor do they receive financing from any company or organization that can benefit from this article, and they have declared that they lack of relevant links beyond the academic position cited.

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