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AVED for Aged Care Residents with Dementia

September 25, 2014 0 Comments

A Virtual App called AVED has been designed specifically for individuals living with middle to advanced stages of dementia.

For the past couple of years, Mandy Salomon, senior researcher at the Smart Services Co-operative Research Centre (CRC) has worked on the project named Applying Virtual Environments for Dementia Care (AVED).

AVED is a pilot prototype of an interactive, tablet-based 3D environment which includes familiar places such as kitchens, sitting rooms and gardens. It aims to help aged care residents with dementia through the use of virtual reality.

When asked what dementia individuals can do with AVED, Mandy Salomon says “They can decorate their virtual rooms using colours, fabric swatches and paintings or drag their favourite photos into wall frames.”

James Bonner and Norman Wang led the AVED project with former and current PhD students at Swinburne. Bonner and Wang are known for their design of the gaming technology used for the Virtual Dementia Experience at the Victoria Perc Walkley Dementia Leaning Centre in Parkville. Their gaming technology won an educational category award at the most recent national iAwards.

When working with AVED, Salomon observed how dementia residents reacted to the activity, based on a number of factors. Some of the factors were their interaction with the app and how the app provoked reflection by the user about their surroundings.

Bonner says, “[We] found that when we revisit, they remember us and the application, which, given their condition, is quite profound.”

“It makes us feel fantastic.”

Next month, Salomon will be travelling to Scotland to present her findings from AVED at the Alzheimer’s European Conference and at IdeasLab 2014. Both events are hosted by the University of Stirling.

Filed in: Projects, Technology

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