HOME 4 CARE--the Hearthstone Optimized Multimedia Environment for Care-planning, Activities, Recreation, and Education

Period of Performance: 09/01/2016 - 04/30/2017


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Hearthstone Alzheimer Care, LTD
Woburn, MA 01801
Principal Investigator


PROJECT SUMMARY In the proposed Phase 2 Project, we will complete the development and testing of an innovative product called HOME 4 CARE (the Hearthstone Optimized Multimedia Environment for Care-planning, Activities, Recreation, and Education). HOME 4 CARE (H4C), which has gone through preliminary development and testing in Phase 1, will be the first commercially-available mobile software suite designed to improve the quality of care provided to persons with dementia (PWD) by home health workers (HHW). The suite will consist of three main components, each of which relates to distinct, but equally important, aspects of caring for PWD: (1) Therapeutic Recreation (activities) for home health clients (TR), (2) Dementia Education for Homecare Staff (DEHS), and (3) Dementia-specific Care Planning (DCP). The H4C Suite will be a cross-platform application, designed to operate on major operating systems (Android, iOS, and Windows) and browsers. While the primary target industry is home health care, a secondary market will consist of long term care and adult day centers. Phase 2 development and testing of the H4C App will consist of the following. For the TR module, additional content for the three activity types used in Phase 1 will be developed and evaluated. Also, three additional activity types will be developed and tested, resulting in six different activity types. For the DEHS module, we will improve the three training courses used in Phase 1, based upon feedback obtained in the preliminary testing. We will also create and evaluate three additional training courses (Dining Experience, Activity Programming, and Personal Care). In addition, we will create and evaluate six brief video tutorials--one for each activity type. These tutorials will include specific tips on how to successfully facilitate each activity type and how to adjust the activity for persons in the later stages of dementia. For the DCP module, we will improve the Information Gathering Section (IGS), which was tested in Phase 1. We will also create and test the Goals Section (GS) of the DCP Section, building on the foundation of the IGS. The GS will allow HHW to utilize information from the IGS to create care plans for clients. These care plans will incorporate a calendar view and task view for standard care procedures (toileting, bathing, etc.), appointments for doctor visits and wellness activities, daily tasks (laundry, housekeeping, etc.), as well as utilizing the activities module with clients, and scheduling the education module courses for HHW during informal downtime. The DCP will enable case managers and administrators to create mobile, electronic calendars and task lists for HHW, which will give them a clear purpose throughout the day while working with PWD.