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InspireD app continues digital fight against Dementia

2021-03-03

The InspireD App enables people living with dementia, their carers and families to create a digital memory book to store photographs, videos and sound

The InspireD App enables people living with dementia, their carers and families to create a digital memory book to store photographs, videos and sound; sparking conversations and providing opportunities to share experiences and maintain relationships.

The InspireD app was commissioned by the Health and Social Care Board NI as part of a wider Dementia eHealth and Data Analytics Pathfinder Programme.  It has been developed by researchers from Ulster University’s Schools of Nursing, Computing and the Belfast School of Art in partnership with Dementia NI and Scaffold Digital.

Seamus McErlean, Social Care Commissioning lead said: “For most people, their understanding of dementia is that it is about losing your memory.

“It’s more than that but losing one’s memory is a major symptom of the condition. Memories can be precious, especially when they relate to happy times and being with the people we love. Losing those memories can have a devastating impact on the individual and those around them.

“This App will help people with dementia and their carers create a digital memory book of treasures, photos, videos, etc that will facilitate recall, spark conversations and provide opportunities to share experiences.

“That in turn is life enhancing and helps promote a feeling of well-being and sense of self and belonging. This App supports our objective of enabling people hold on to their memories and to live well with a dementia.”

The app is freely available on the HSC Apps4Dementia library  https://apps4dementia.orcha.co.uk as part of its ongoing activities to increase the uptake of technology in supporting people living with dementia. The app has been rigorously tested and is safe to download and use on smartphones and tablets.

Soo Hun, DHCNI Innovation & Digital Eco-system lead said: “There is growing interest in digital solutions such as mobile apps to support not just those people living with dementia but also their carers, families and friends.

“Working collaboratively with Ulster University, the InspireD App is part of a wider digital transformation programme in health and social care which is being led by Digital Health & Care NI with the support of DoH. The overall aim is to embed clinically assured digital solutions that have been checked for data privacy and security into our clinical pathways.”

Professor Assumpta Ryan, Professor of Ageing and Health at Ulster University and InspireD app project lead commented: “This truly collaborative project brought together Ulster’s research expertise in Nursing, Computing and Design with the lived experience of Dementia NI members and local app developer Scaffold Digital to create an app which has the power to enhance the lives of those living with dementia.

“Spending time with friends and family and sharing experiences and memories is something most of us enjoy and this does not change after a dementia diagnosis. The InspireD app is designed to help people living with dementia to stay connected to family and friends by using photographs, sounds and videos to share memories and trigger conversations that may not otherwise have happened.”

Although designed primarily for people living with dementia and their carers, the app will be of interest to anybody interested in reminiscence including family members, friends and health or social care staff across a range of care settings.

To find out more about the app please visit: https://www.theinspiredapp.com/

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