A new piece of tech is brightening up the lives of residents and visitors at a Gore care home.
Bupa Windsor Park had a Tovertafel installed recently — a $15,000 piece of equipment which projects images on to a table that respond to a person’s touch, general manager Dale Matthews said.
There were 31 games and activities on the device which catered to different skill levels and abilities, without the need for keyboards or controllers.
‘‘The whole idea of it is they have something that is applicable to their age group but also their mobility and understanding of technology as well.’’
There were also seasonal themed games and activities which were only available at certain times of the year, such as Christmas or Easter.
‘‘It was extremely heartwarming . . .watching them just light up and get really involved in it.
‘‘The communication with other residents starts opening up and sometimes there’s a bit of competitiveness.
‘‘It’s a bit of a game changer for our facility because with staffing like it is . . .we can actually get six [residents] around the table to be engaged in it, which then frees a caregiver up to do other activities.’’
Diversional therapist Karen Bray said it also gave residents something to do with their families when they came to visit.
The Tovertafel was being rolled out across all 27 of Bupa’s facilities that offered dementialevel care.
After an initial pilot in six care homes, dementia care adviser Beth McDougall said the technology had proven hugely beneficial.
‘‘Typically, people living with dementia can recede from their environment, but Tovertafel has brought about apparent increased cognitive, physical, and social connectivity in our residents.
‘‘It’s especially helped improve relationships between residents and you can see the difference immediately.’’
Games that included music or song had proven particularly engaging, she said.
‘‘The residents enjoy playing the projected keyboard and often sing along to tunes.
‘‘In some instances, even typically non-verbal residents participate. We hear laughter and see joy. It’s incredible.’’