Benefits of computerised coaching in dementia

Computerised coaching can enable dementia patients to wash their hands without assistance, a study conducted in Canada suggests.

Researchers from the University of Toronto showed that an artificial intelligence system was able to increase the number of steps in the handwashing process that patients were able to perform without assistance. The system also decreased the number of times carers had to assist patients.

The system, known as COACH, uses a camera to assess patients' actions and provides prompts when errors are made.

‘The COACH system shows promise as a tool to help to support older adults with moderate levels of dementia and their caregivers,' the researchers conclude.

The patients in the trial were in a long-term care facility, but community-based trials of the system are due to begin next year.

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