Assistive technology innovations to watch from Rehacare 2016
At October’s Rehacare, more than 90,000 consumers, healthcare professionals and companies journeyed to Dusseldorf’s Messe from around the world to see the latest innovation in rehabilitation, prevention, inclusion and care products and services.
AT Today has picked out as four of the most eye-catching and forward-thinking devices at the show which will be worth keeping an eye on.
Tongue controlled mobility and communication?
One of the most technologically innovative devices showcased at this year’s show was TKS Technology’s iTongue. The creation of Aalborg University’s Faculty of Medicine Associate Professor, Lotte Andreasen Struijk, the iTongue allows users to communicate and even control their wheelchair using just their tongue.
The ideal solution for those who have suffered spinal cord injuries and cannot use their arms or legs but can still use their tongue, the device is designed to fit inside a user’s mouth. The user then uses their tongue via a piercing which operates sensors built into the device, effectively functioning as a mouse and keyboard on a computer. In this way, paralysed people have the ability to operate a computer or control their wheelchair.
The company has also launched a range of other products including the iHandle, a finger operated controller; the iTremor, a digital device allowing people with tremors to use standard wheelchair joysticks safely; and the iCtrl, a smartphone and tablet application that allows a wheelchair user to control their chair using their smartphone.
More information can be found at the website HERE
The Great Gatsby
One of the most striking mobility products being shown at Rehacare was Swiss-based Vintage Mobility’s mobility scooter, the Gatsby. Rethinking what a conventional mobility scooter looks like, the Gatsby takes heavy inspiration for both its name and design from the 1920s and in particular Ford’s legendary Model T.
The scooters are designed in Switzerland and are TÜV and FDA approved as a medical product in Germany and the United States, with a lockable front storage compartment, large front bumper & grill and reaching speeds of 6 – 11 miles per hour.
The company claims that the Gatsby is the first in what will become a family of vintages scooters, with another already planned to be launched in 2017.
Hate or love the design, it is definitely unique and stands out from the usual scooter look. Find out more at the website HERE
SitnStand stands out
One of the stand-out products at Rehacare is a new device that helps people sit down and stand up. Aptly called the SitnStand, the device features multiple air sealed layers and an air pump that inflates and deflates to assist with a user to either sit or stand.
Operated via a remote with two main bottoms for inflation or deflation, the portable device focuses on simplicity and weighs less than 2.5kg, allowing users to use the device anywhere in the home or when out and about.
The company hopes the device will increase users’ mobility and independence, whilst also removing risk and strain to caregivers who help those that struggle getting out of chairs.
More information about the device can be found HERE
Reinventing the wheelchair
Claiming to have rethought the wheelchair concept entirely, German-based DESINO showcased their innovative adaptive wheelchair, the Radius. After years of research, including motion analysis of how the human body moves when walking, the award-winning wheelchair has developed a unique seat and drive system that transmits motion similar to human gait on the spine.
Focusing on comfort and movement, the patented seating structure activates the spine, relieving the back and upper extremities. Its lever drive transmits a natural, slight swinging motion which reduces functional disorders caused by a rigid posture.
The manual hybrid drive system combines the conventional hand-rim drive for interiors with a lever drive for longer distances. The steering and brakes are also linked to the lever drive which is operated by tilting the handles, while the gearshift has 8 or 11 gears; letting the user travel further distances easier.
The Radius is currently only through DESINO’s website, with the company currently looking for distributors in the UK.
To find out more, visit the website HERE