Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) and NHS South East Coast Strategic Health Authority
Design and manufacture a product to remind dementia patients to drink regularly to avoid dehydration.
Frazer-Nash has a highly skilled design team with a proven record of developing medical products – from generating concepts and analysing design to delivering working prototypes.
Dementia is a progressive condition which currently affects around 570,000 people in England alone, predominantly those in the over 65 age group.
Patients suffering from this condition can often become malnourished and dehydrated as they literally forget to eat and drink throughout the day. Although care homes schedule regular water drink breaks to ensure patients remain fully hydrated, patients living alone remain at risk.
Frazer-Nash was awarded an SBRI contract to develop a product that would alert dementia patients at regular intervals, reminding them to take a drink. This would reduce the threat of dehydration, enabling them to live more independently.
To understand the issue from a range of perspectives, we assembled a stakeholder group comprising a lead clinical consultant, district nurse, private care home provider and community telecare service provider.
These discussions gave us a deep insight into the issues faced by dementia patients, and highlighted the functional requirements of the new system in order to address these. We then took this insight and brainstormed a number of options with our design engineers.