Home » Empowering Seniors » AgeTech Allows Older Adults to Remain Independent, Active, and Connected
Sponsored
Bridgette Murphy, Age-Well

Bridgette Murphy

Managing Director & COO, AGE-WELL

AGE-WELL is driving the growth of Canada’s AgeTech sector to accelerate the delivery of technologies that benefit older adults and caregivers.


Betty Faulkner had a successful career, raised three sons, and travels extensively with her husband, but she struggles with everyday tasks due to hand tremors.

Faulkner was diagnosed with essential tremor more than 30 years ago. Both of her hands are affected but the right hand is worse, and she’s right-handed. She struggles to drink from a cup without spilling and finds it difficult to fasten jewellery, tie shoelaces, or type on her smartphone. Her husband has done most of the cooking for the past decade because she’s worried about handling a knife.

Betty Faulkner utilizing the Steadi-Two glove. This device is designed to stabilize the wrist joint and forearm.

“These are many little things, but when you can’t do them, it makes a big impact on your life,” says Faulkner, who’s 76.

But Faulkner says the Steadi-Two glove by Steadiwear Inc. has been life-changing. The lightweight, battery-free glove is designed to “intelligently” stabilize the wrist joint and forearm in people living with essential tremor and Parkinson’s disease. The technology is inspired by design used to stabilize buildings against earthquakes — a technology called magnetic tuned mass damping.

“It’s worth its weight in gold. I can do things I couldn’t do before. It’s made a real difference,” says Faulkner, who’s back to eating soup, applying makeup, and doing jigsaw puzzles with her grandchildren.

Technology-based solutions are needed to support older adults to stay independent, active, and connected and to enable aging in place, alleviate pressure on our health system, and transform care across all settings.

Products to support healthy aging

Steadiwear Inc. is supported by AGE-WELL, Canada’s technology and aging network. For the past seven years, AGE-WELL has served as a catalyst for technological innovation that helps older Canadians maintain their independence, health, and quality of life, while driving Canada’s AgeTech sector. AGE-WELL includes more than 250 researchers at 47 universities and research centres across Canada, more than 1,000 trainees, and over 400 industry, government, and non-profit partners.

AGE-WELL supports more than 60 Canadian startups, like Steadiwear, that are commercializing and launching AgeTech products. Approximately 5,000 older adults and caregivers are also involved in the AGE-WELL network, ensuring that technologies are practical.

Approximately 5,000 older adults and caregivers are also involved in the AGE-WELL network, ensuring that technologies are practical.

Solidifying Canada’s leadership in AgeTech

AGE-WELL works across the full breadth of the innovation pipeline, from early-stage research to implementation and commercialization. More than 170 technologies, services, policies, and practices are in development — or already bringing benefits. These include virtual exercise programs, remote therapies, non-intrusive health monitoring technology, and medication and daily life management apps and services for people living with dementia.

AGE-WELL works across the full breadth of the innovation pipeline, from early-stage research to implementation and commercialization. More than 170 technologies, services, policies, and practices are in development — or already bringing benefits. These include virtual exercise programs, remote therapies, non-intrusive health monitoring technology, and medication and daily life management apps and services for people living with dementia.

Eight Challenge Areas drive AGE-WELL’s research and innovation in supporting older adults and caregivers and achieving social and economic impact. AGE-WELL also advocates for equitable access to technology.

“It’s about empowering older Canadians and helping people remain independent in the setting of their choice for as long as possible,” Murphy says. “The increase in the acceptance of digital solutions, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic along with our aging population, makes this the right time to move technology forward to really make a difference in people’s lives.”

Next article