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In-Home Care: Meet Rudy
Nov 16, 2017 by Toni Reinhart
I just spent a wonderful morning with my mother filming an interview for Channel 9 News about Rudy, the robot designed for seniors. Mother had been part of the testing process for Rudy and she greeted him like he was an old friend.
I remember when I first heard about Rudy, I thought, my mother isn’t going to talk to a robot. Well, I was wrong. Not only does she talk to him, she said she forgets that’s he’s just a robot. She feels like he is a companion. And, she told me, “he never disagrees with me.” She enjoys having him around.
I like that my mother sees him as a companion and not as a tool. We can get Rudy to do things, like:
- Move around more. Rudy asked mother if she wanted to dance and she did! Rudy’s moves are a little limited, but then, so are mother’s. Rudy started to play Glen Miller’s “In the Mood” and mother got up and moved to the music with him. She enjoyed it and asked if it could play more tunes for her.
- Check her memory. Rudy has a game built-in. It’s like the Simon Says we played as children. It was a fun game for my mother, but it’s also a way for us to check her memory. Luckily for us both, she did great.
- Keep in contact with me. Rudy has a screen built in that makes it easy for me to video chat with her. I know I can Skype to my mother’s cell phone, but then I only get to see her. I can move Rudy around with my cell phone or laptop and look around the house. It’s a great way for me to see what’s going on and if there is anything I should be concerned about. For instance, if I suddenly saw something like dirty dishes in the living room, that would be a red flag for me. I can drive Rudy from anywhere: my home, my office, or when I’m in Paris.
- Carry things for her. Rudy has a sturdy tray on his shoulder, so mother can do things like, make a sandwich in the kitchen, put it on Rudy’s tray, and walk back to the table to have lunch. Rudy will walk with her and safely deliver the sandwich. It gives me peace of mind to know she can get help carrying things. It’s one of the major reasons for a fall in seniors.
- Remind her to do things. Rudy can be programmed with reminders. I can remind her to take her medications or that she has a doctor’s appointment coming up.
We plan on using Rudy for clients of my Comfort Keepers business to help out with the caregivers. Especially live-in caregivers. Nighttime can be a dangerous time for our senior clients. Many times, they need to get up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom and don’t always wake the caregiver. Rudy responds to sound and movement, so he can “wake up” with the client. If they need help, he can alert the caregiver. Otherwise, Rudy can escort them to the bathroom. He is sturdy enough for them to lean on and he is illuminated to help light their way.
Another great application for Rudy is with seniors who don’t have full-time caregivers, but wish to live alone and remain independent for as long as possible. Rudy isn’t just a robot. He’s an entire service. Nurses and care managers from Comfort Keepers use Rudy to check in on the client 3 times a day. If the senior needs help at any time, all they have to do is ask! Rudy will call for help. Of course, they can also use Rudy just to call and check in anytime they want.
We would be happy to talk with you more about Rudy. Meanwhile, check him out at INF Robotics.
We’re here to help 24/7. Give us a call at (703) 424-9519, or stop by at 459 Herndon Pkwy #5, Herndon, VA 20170
Comfort Keepers Herndon is a full-service, in-home care provider for the elderly - helping to keep your loved ones at home longer for better quality of life.