The purpose of this research project for the 2017-2018 academic year is to study, analyze, and, explore how technology and older adults (ages 60+) interact. As of now, the focus is primarily relating to how technology can be utilized by older adults in regards to their overall health and well being. This includes using digital monitoring devices to obtain information such as oxygen levels, blood pressure, and heart rate. Once these vitals are taken, they can be digitally sent and stored in an online portal that can be accessed by the patient, or primary care physician, at a later time. An understanding of these vitals is important in providing proactive treatment of serious issues that can arise including strokes and heart attacks. Previous research has shown that older adults are willing and eager to utilize technology, and this project will further explore the benefits of interconnecting this population with today’s technological advancements. The working title for this project is “Digital Health Education for Seniors.”
From this project, a better understanding of exactly how digital health education can be beneficial to this population will be obtained. This research will allow us to learn more about the ever-growing relationship between senior citizens and technology. Are they willing to accept and utilize this technology for a specific purpose? How quickly can they adapt to new software/hardware? In what ways do they learn best? How can an overall understanding of their health lead to a better of quality of life? All of these questions will be addressed and investigated during the course of the project.
A number of different methods will be used in order to accomplish this project. Most notably, partnership with Senior centers (tentatively Carter Burden Network and Brookdale) will be used in order to access the target population. Additionally, the research team with partner with Vital Care Services, an organization that specializes in digital health management and collaboration. A comprehensive test will be given at the beginning and end of the research so that the success rate can be examined. The research will consist of frequent and consistent monitoring of older adults and their relationship with new technology, ideas, and practices. At the end of the project, a better understanding of this population and their needs will be found.