Help me, I’m falling and I can’t get up!



Jokes aside, falling down is something everyone experiences as they grow up, as well as old. While little kids tumble and fall about due to their carelessness or less developed physique, they recover pretty fast from each fall only to come back stronger. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for older folks since falls can kill an elderly under certain cases (sharp edges around furniture, knocking one’s head on the floor, broken bones that cannot heal, the list goes on). The Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) has just released a statement, mentioning it has successfully developed a cellphone system for elderly people, sensing if they have already toppled over and subsequently informing family and medical providers instantly.

This is made possible as the cellphone is equipped with a sensor carried on the belt that is capable of detecting sudden movement such as a fall, sending a signal to a computer in a hospital. Not only that, the computer will then call the person to see if he/she is hurt. Should the patient require some form of assistance, the computer will report that need to the hospital’s emergency center and family. Through the clever use of GPS technology, the device can now pinpoint the exact location of the patient for hospital workers to rush to the exact location within a short time. Due to a transfer of technology to communications companies last month, this new system is expected to go online sometime next year.

According to the ETRI Bioinformatics Team leader Park Soo-jun, “When the size of the sensor is reduced, seniors will be able to carry it in the form of a belt buckle or a brooch. They’ll be able to download a program that senses the signal from the sensor to any mobile phone they’re using.” This system looks like a prime candidate to be used in nursing homes and hospitals that are endowed with an Internet connection, letting users carry nothing more than the sensor instead of a cellphone. Like anything and everything good, this can’t roll out fast enough.

Source: Digital Chosunibo

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