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Program to assist brain injured veterans to return to community

The US Navy Seals blog, posted a story on a new project sponsored by the Heath Services Research and development Service of the VA Hospital in Tampa, Florida to assist  patients who are suffering from traumatic brain injury (TBI) to be able to “independently plan, organize, and complete everyday activities,”

The $3 million project, dubbed as “Smart Home,” utilizes advanced technology to return to the community and perform activities of daily living. The project will assist brain injured veterans to relearn necessary skills and will  be accomplished by following the movements of these individuals and sending them text messages or video prompts should they get off track.

Five apartments that serve as homes to ten veterans have been equipped by the Tampa VA hospital with a suite of equipment, which includes a system that tracks the patients’ location, as well as sensors that monitor the use of appliances, and screens that will relay video prompts.

Appliances in the specially-equipped apartments have sensors that can detect whether a patient completed a task or performed it correctly; otherwise, it issues a prompt to put the patient back on track.

The program has been described by its director as a “cognitive prosthetic,” the primary goal of which is to rehabilitate veterans suffering from TBI so that they can function normally outside the confines of the hospital.

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