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Medical device app addresses the Alzheimer’s epidemic

New app announced to help with this fatal disease; can packaging make a positive impact?

Clevermind updated
Clevermind updated

The merging of medical devices and technology continue to amaze. In late May, healthcare technology firm Clevermind LLC announced that its “Kickstarter” funding goal was reached, locking in more than $10,000 from more than 100 supporters, with funding going toward a new app (see photo) intended to help people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia as well as their family members and caregivers.

The app, called Clevermind, combines cognitive therapy and interactive programs to help stimulate the brain, provide entertainment and maintain daily schedules and nutrition/exercise goals. The app includes interactive programs including nutrition and exercise, games, news, daily activities, music and movies, audio books, and more.  
Clevermind is expected to be available via the Apple iTunes store in June, with Android and Microsoft versions to follow.

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S., with more than five million Americans now living with the disease, according to the Alzheimer's Assn. Go to its Web site and you can watch a video displaying several alarming statistics, including the following:

• One in three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another dementia.

• In 2013, Alzheimer’s will cost the nation $203 billion, a number expected to rise to $1.2 trillion by 2050.

The growing epidemic begs the question: Can packages be designed better, perhaps with label or print or graphics to address the needs of Alzheimer's patients or caregivers? Weigh in here with your comments.

Clevermind LLC says the brain behind the comprehensive tool is its founder and CEO Glenn Palumbo. Finding an outlet for patients who are aging and/or suffering from cognitive impairments was an undertaking too close to home for Palumbo. In 2009, his father was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. That inspired Palumbo, a veteran in the IT world, and his team of experts at Clevermind to create an iPad app that would help his father and others stay independent while keeping the brain active.

During a next phase, Palumbo and his team will place several iPads for beta testing with selective consumers and in various nursing home facilities throughout the Chicagoland area. More development will follow to enhance the functionality of the different components such as adding more levels to the games, refining the speech recognition, and implementing the data tracking.

Separately, Medical Device & Diagnostic Industry’s online DeviceTalk reported on “Five breakthrough technologies that evoke just one reaction: Wow.”

They included GE Healthcare’s V-Scan Ultrasound, NeuroVigil’s iBrain Headband, AliveCor’s Mobile Heart Monitor, Check-Cap’s Colorectal Screening Capsule, and Tandem Diabetes’ T:Slim Insulin Pump.

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