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Life changing initiative for the elderly

Digital technology to gain extra independence - Photo: RemoAge

A NEW initiative that aims to make elderly people more connected with care services and their community through the use of digital technology is being trialled in the North Isles.

The RemoAge project will take place in Yell, Unst and Fetlar for the next 18 months after already being introduced in the Western Isles, as well as Sweden and Norway.

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The EU-funded project was launched on Thursday at the Mid Yell hall, with participants and volunteers invited to take part in the trial.

It is hoped that elderly folk and people living with dementia can use technology such as iPads to gain extra independence in their own homes and stay more connected with their community, family, friends and carers.

The Shetland project was given £122,000 of funding from the EU’s Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme, while the local council and health board will give support through staff and existing resources.

North Isles councillor Gary Cleaver said the system could be used across the whole of Shetland if the trial is successful.

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“This is a potentially life changing project for some of our most isolated residents.

“Just being able to know your carer is able to keep an eye on you, or that you can keep in touch with your family by using existing technology could make a big difference to the quality of folk’s lives and resilience to cope with life’s ups and downs,” he said.

“Running the project in the north isles also gives us an important opportunity to test this approach in areas where we know there are huge differences in the quality of connectivity.

“I’m very pleased to see the project getting underway, and if we’ve a good result here, I’m sure it’s a model which could eventually be used across the isles.”

 

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