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Alzheimers Dement (N Y). 2017 May 10;3(3):332-338. doi: 10.1016/j.trci.2017.04.004. eCollection 2017 Sep.

Technology for home dementia care: A prototype locating system put to the test.

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Department of Psychiatry, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, corporate member of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and Berlin Institute of Health (BIH), Berlin, Germany.
German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Berlin, Germany.



The user experience of persons with dementia and their primary caregivers with locating systems is not firmly established.


Eighteen dyads used a prototype locating system during 4 weeks. Primary outcome measures were ratings of usability, and product functions and features. Secondary outcome measures were caregiver burden, perceived self-efficacy, frequency of use, and willingness to purchase the prototype. Changes in scores between baseline (T1) and end of testing period (T2) were compared by performing independent and dependent samples correlations and descriptive statistics.


Seventeen dyads made up the final sample. Ratings of usability and product functions and features were fair, but usability ratings were significantly reduced after 4 weeks. Although the prototype was used infrequently by majority of the participants, most caregivers would be willing to purchase the prototype, with men more willing than women. No significant change in technological willingness, caregiver burden, or perceived self-efficacy was found between T1 and T2. Perceived self-efficacy significantly negatively correlated with willingness to purchase the prototype after 4 weeks.


Results highlight the importance of including end users in the research and development phase of locating systems to improve the user experience in home dementia care. Necessary indications for further research are carrying out randomized controlled trials with larger, more representative samples and developing innovative software and hardware solutions.


Assistive living technologies; Caregivers; Dementia; Locating systems; Technology; Tracking systems; Usability; User experience

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