Friday, 23 January 2015

Memrica develops app to aid dementia sufferers

Memrica develops app to aid dementia sufferers


Company based at Innovation Birmingham Campus is seeing people to join testing group to help bring new app to market later this year



Founder of Memrica Mary Matthews
Founder of Memrica Mary Matthews

A tech start-up company based at Innovation Birmingham Campus is developing a mobile aid for people with memory problems including the early stages of dementia.
Memrica has been awarded a grant from Nominet Trust, a so-called 'tech for good' funder, to help it develop the first rollout of the app called 'Memrica Prompt'.
The company is a member of Innovation Birmingham's Entrepreneurs for the Future mentoring and support programme.
Designed to reduce the anxiety and frustration caused by forgetting essential information, it creates a virtual link between the things people want to remember and the objects and people around them.
It also offers a reminder system which collates data, image and voice files to prompt the user about day-to-day tasks.
By increasing confidence and prolonging independence, the app is designed to delay the need for more extensive health and social care and reduce stress for families and carers.
The tablet and smartphone app is being designed and developed in collaboration with people with dementia, their carers and clinical experts.
A pilot population of those with early stage dementia, particularly people under 65 who enjoy using smartphone and tablet apps and already have an iPhone or iPad, is now sought to test the app.
Founder of Memrica Mary Matthews said: "44 million people worldwide live with dementia and this number is expected to triple by 2050. Eight per cent of those diagnosed with dementia are under 65.
"Memrica Prompt is a memory aid that can be built over time with photos, prompts, references and calendar notes to make all aspects of everyday life easier, such as going to the hairdresser or doctor, as well as relating to family and friends.
"Each subscription package gives access to up to five users, enabling loved ones and carers to contribute information to the app."
The company has created the Memrica Prompt test application on the iOS Apple platform and is seeking 50 people, either living with early onset dementia or who are worried about failing memory,  to help test the initial versions and then participate in a pilot.
The outcome of the trial, which will be independently run by Coventry University's Health Design Technology Institute, will be used to shape the continued development of the app.
The app is expected to launch to the public this summer.

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