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Smart technologies for older people – technology’s influence on aged care

Technology has an increasing influence not only on the aged care space in general, but the ageing population at large. It gives us the confidence and the means to do things we otherwise couldn’t – however, we understand that it’s still new and challenging for a lot of seniors. If you want to learn how the use of technology can help you both in everyday life and in the long run, you’ve come to the right place!

Technology is here to stay, that much is sure. How we engage with it and what we use it for is what makes Feros Care and our wonderful clients different. It’s no secret that technology has slowly but surely made its way into aged care, and nowadays it’s paving the way towards personalised, efficient treatment of all ailments associated with old age. It has many benefits and as a senior, you should definitely try to take as much advantage of new innovations as you can. How? Let us help you!

Age-friendly, helpful devices for seniors

First things first: there are hundreds and hundreds of devices available that can help you with anything from the smallest inconveniences to overcoming major barriers. These range from personal emergency alarms and pendants, through electronic wheelchairs, all the way to comprehensive health monitoring and everything in-between.

It’s easy to get lost in the sea of new devices, but that’s exactly what’s great about assistive technology – it’s always improving, and therefore it’s also getting easier to find just the right solutions for your personal needs.  Whether you need hearing or vision enhancements, a fall alarm, or a Telehealth nurse to oversee the progress of your health, technology (and Feros Care) has you covered.

Personal alarms can provide you with a peace of mind – these activate in the case of an emergency, and we can notify and send out help almost immediately. These alarms make life easier and safer – they are the best investment you can make as you near your golden years. To get a personal alarm set up in your home, see our available options here.

Another great solution that technology has given us is remote monitoring. You probably understand how time-consuming and sometimes challenging it is to see doctors and nurses and specialists and allied health professionals… the list goes on. Remote monitoring allows you to keep track of your health progress from the comfort of your own home, without all the hassle.

Our free program, Staying Healthy Living Well, can help you understand more about your health and provide you with ideas, tips, and approaches to become more confident at home. To find out how you can participate in this amazing technology-powered program, read more here.

Virtual and social help for seniors  

One of the greatest benefits of technology is that it can connect you with people and communities far from you. Besides your immediate friends and family, you can also access like-minded people who are on similar journeys as yourself.

Let’s take one of our volunteers, Jenny, who knows just how much help technology can be. She keeps in contact with Margaret, in her 80s, via email.

Virtual connection may not suit everyone but it works for Jenny, who leads a busy life, and Margaret, who has had a stroke and prefers contact by email.

“Margaret’s computer skills are quite good; and she’s very interested in the internet,” Jenny says. “It’s good for those clients who are interested in computers and who want to have some friendly contact without it being intrusive.”

Jenny says Margaret loves the photos she sends her when she’s on holiday and believes sending more will be beneficial for their relationship. She describes volunteering via email as “a modern day pen friend concept” and predicts over time this type of volunteering will grow.

But emailing new friends isn’t your only option! Our Virtual Senior Centre is an amazing online community for Feros Care customers to come together and participate in special interest groups, arts and crafts workshops, seated exercise programs, and other fun activities – without leaving the house!

It’s proof that technology is useful not just when it comes to devices, but also when it comes to utilising the internet to connect people to their communities. If you’d like to meet new people and become part of a community, read more here.

Safe, age-proof mobile banking

This is probably no news, but more and more services are offered online on your personal devices. You can access just about any recipe you can think of, you can shop for anything from groceries to furniture, and you can even sell your own things just using your phone. And, of course, you can do your banking.

Mobile technology can be a wonderfully handy tool for doing banking on the go. It’s convenient, but you also need to be aware of the potential risks that come with using mobile devices and ensure you protect yourself. Here’s five ways to keep your money safe while using your mobile device!

1. Three strikes and you’re out

Banks are required to make mobile banking a safe and secure method of managing your money so they build in strong software security measures to protect accounts. The most basic of these is the lock-out, where you only get so many attempts to enter a correct PIN or password. Then there’s the time-out, due to inactivity while using the app. There’s no need to take it personally if you get locked out while fiddling around or entering the wrong details. These safeguards are there in case it’s not actually you doing the fiddling. There’s usually a time limit indicated when you can make another attempt or you may have to contact the bank.

2. Strength, not just in numbers

When setting up a password, make sure it’s hard for others to guess. A strong password is considered to be eight or more characters long, made up of numbers, letters and symbols. While there’s many passwords to remember these days, try to avoid using the same password for multiple sites. And of course keep your PIN or password confidential. Making sure you have password locks on your phone and its SIM card too will help.

3. Mind your own business

Gathering information about your identity can lead online criminals to access your bank account. Ways this can happen include receiving a text message, email or a pop-up ad on your mobile device. Any of these can direct you to a fake website (that can look quite real) that wants some information from you. You could also receive a fake phone survey with questions that try to trick you into revealing personal details. The best thing to do is keep your personal details to yourself. And bear in mind that your bank will never contact you via text or email to request personal information; nor should you send it.

4. Never in public

Another rule to live by is to never use public WIFI for accessing a bank app. Public WIFI, such as those in shopping malls, is not a secure internet connection so opportunistic criminals can potentially ‘see’ what you’re doing online. In busy areas when you’re out and about, it’s also worth checking over your shoulder to see who might be looking your way before you enter details into the banking app on your phone.

5. Proactively protect

Make sure you download the updates for your mobile phone or tablet. These can contain fixes for potential security breaches. Being lax about updates can leave you vulnerable to hackers trying to exploit any software weaknesses. Prevention is better they say than cure.

There’s no doubt about it, technology is making our lives easier. Whether through assistive devices, virtual communities, or online services, it has well and truly become a major part of our lives. We urge you to take advantage of as many as you can – after all, they exist to benefit and serve us. Who knows, you could stumble upon the perfect assistive technology for you, or a new group of friends.

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