‘The future is here with AI and robotic technology’
YARMOUTH, Maine – Artificial intelligence could help address the issues of loneliness and isolation in older adults that cause related health issues.
AARP has reported that 14% of older adults enrolled in Medicare have insufficient social networks, which translates to about $6.7 billion in added Medicare spending each year. AI-powered conversational robots, like ElliQ from Intuition Robotics, are helping to address those issues.
“Loneliness and isolation are huge issues for older adults,” said Dor Skuler, CEO and co-founder of Intuition Robotics. “There are many health risks like an acceleration in dementia and depression, as well as heart disease. There’s also a problem with the amount of stress on the caregivers.”
The Intuition Robotics AI platform that powers the ElliQ robot won this year’s Innovation Award for Cognitive Robotics from AI Breakthrough, an independent organization that recognizes the top companies, technologies and products in the global AI market today.
Conversational robots use voice technology to make interaction more natural and leverage AI to learn about the user’s everyday activities. They can synthesize the data to alert caregivers to an emergency situation and to predict the possible onset of diseases or serious health conditions. They can also make seniors aging in place feel less alone.
On a recent edition of the Digital Health Today podcast, Skuler said that the robots currently being developed incorporate interfaces, voice technology and body language that people can understand to make the interaction with them easier.
“It’s not so much about the interaction with technology, but interaction with the world,” he said.
AI-powered conversational robot technology has the potential to ensure that more people can live and age well at home, according to a study published recently in Public Policy & Aging Report
“The future is here with AI and robotic technology,” the report’s authors wrote. “The idea that older adults are technophobes needs to be rethought. An increasingly aging population necessitates the design and use of innovative technologies that are easy to use, affordable by most and have multiple uses.”