Award Date: 2016
Project Lead(s): Marion Godoy, Senior Nurse Consultant
Project Title: Advancing Recreation and Cognitive Engagement through Technology
What is the issue?
Seniors living in long-term care homes may be uninterested or unable to participate in group physical activities.
What did we do?
Linked Senior is a computer platform that allows care providers to engage all residents in recreational activity. It matches older adults’ interests and cognitive abilities with activities that reflect their preferences.
We studied Linked Senior at three long-term care homes in Toronto for more than a year. Our goal was to see if it improved clinical and financial outcomes. Staff used the platform to develop personalized activity plans for more than 270 residents and monitored their progress. We evaluated clinical outcomes and financial impact.
What did we find?
Recreational activity increased among residents, resulting in improved cognitive functioning and social engagement, and decreased aggressive behaviour. We also noted a decrease in the use of antipsychotic medication over time. The staff were very satisfied with the platform. It significantly reduced the amount of time for them to plan and implement recreational programming, leaving them more time to engage in other care activities. There were substantial financial savings in staff salaries.