Staying Safe at Home
There have been great advances in the world of assistive technology to help some people live longer in their own homes. These advances can provide both the person with dementia and their carer with peace of mind. Assistive technology can be defined as ‘any device or system that allows an individual to perform a task that they would otherwise be unable to do, or increases the ease and safety with which the task can be performed’.
If you feel that you could live more safely at home if you had equipment to assist you or if your home needs to be adapted in some way, you can request a visit from an Occupational Therapist He/she will work with you to identify suitable solutions to live at home as safely and independently as possible. They often work together with the Care and Repair Service who offer free services to older people aged 70 and over, and those 60 and over with a disability or long term illness. The agency provides advice and assistance on home repairs and improvements, can carry out small repairs in your home, undertake home safety checks and advise on larger scale works including providing advice on grant funding.
East Dunbartonshire’s assistive technology service (sometimes referred to as telecare) is called Hourcare 24. By pressing a button on a community alarm installed in your home or on a pendant worn around your neck or wrist, you are instantly in touch with one of the staff at the Control Centre who are available 24 hours a day. The person you speak to will be able to respond to your problem either by:
- contacting a friend or relative whose details you have given them
- sending one of their Mobile Officers to assist you, or
- if necessary, alerting one of the emergency services
The service is available to older people, people with a disability and other people who may have a need for the service. They can arrange to demonstrate the alarm service in your home without obligation.
Further Reading – Useful Websites
- Telecare and Dementia which explores how telecare can contribute to the support, protection, and quality of life of people with dementia. It also considers the importance of telecare in providing support and reassurance to carers
- AT Dementia is a charity managed by Trent Dementia Services Development Centre working to promote high quality care and services for people with dementia through consultancy, project work, education and information and advice on assistive technologies
- Gadgets and Gizmos – is an online training course explaining assistive technology from Carers Link
- The Assisted Living Showflat at Auchinairn Gate, Bishopbriggs showcases the latest in home assistive technology equipment for independent living and people with dementia and their carers are invited to book a visit
- Living Made Easy (Disabled Living Foundation) provides clear, practical advice on daily living equipment
- Home & Technology Rica (Research Institute for Consumer Affairs) is a charity which carries out research and publishes information to enable disabled and older people to live independently
- Dementia Circle aims to find, test and share everyday products that can help people with dementia stay independent for longer in their own homes, this is supported by Alzheimer Scotland.