Families using cheap internet connected CCTV to watch elderly parents!

Rather fascinatingly in the last couple of weeks I’ve come across several patients who are keeping tabs on their elderly relatives via home CCTV. It goes to show how people adapt technology to suit their needs.

Recently there appears to be a plethora of new gadgets aimed at home security that are easier to use than ever before – I’ve seen some advertised on TV stating you can watch what you dog is up to while you are out – well people are using it to watch granny. As well as allowing you to view them from anywhere on a smartphone you can speak and listen via them. While there are dog biscuit releasing ones – there don’t yet appear to be meals on wheels releasing ones!

I’m not sure if anyone has thought about the security implications of having peoples lives broadcast to the net or how hackable the streams are.

I know some of the cameras have software that detects movement and send alerts but one of my patients said what she really wants is the software to detect lack of movement and alert her as she’d logged on the other day to she her mother-in-law lying on the floor and hadnt been sure how long she was down for.

Historically people have had audio only care calls installed in their homes that ring in a couple of times a day and make sure they are ok or respond to a panic button. Im not sure if a video monitoring service exists or if we’d want one.

What it does make me think is could Alexa or other autobot perform this role? Check on someone a couple of times a day? See if they respond? Perhaps even check they arent confused by asking questions?

Given I was in a meeting the other day when someones phone which was clearly listening in announced it couldnt sing a song – could they listen in for falls or cries for help!

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