The Economy Magazine from Italy reported on how digitization can enable a life that places the well-being of people in need of care at the centre and provides maximum support all around.
The Lombard town of Carpenedolo has recently welcomed Alzheimer's patients with an almost globally unique long-term care solution:
In the "Villaggio Insieme," which translates to the "Together Village," people with cognitive impairments such as dementia and Alzheimer's find a new home to feel comfortable in, covering 5,400 square meters.
The care facility has two crucial advantages:
Architecturally, it replicates the cross-section of a typical village with its houses and shopping opportunities, providing residents with a familiar, realistic living environment that has a calming effect and thus eases the necessary care for all involved.
A beautiful detail is the room ceilings, which, in communal areas and resident rooms, simulate a sky with the help of light, allowing residents to experience a daily rhythm.
Simultaneously, life in the "Villagio Insieme" is particularly safe and efficient due to a high degree of technological sophistication: biometric data of residents are continuously collected and transmitted to their digital medical records. Thanks to Building Information Modeling, the entire village is managed efficiently, saving time and ensuring accuracy through its digital twin.
For lifting and transfer technology, the choice was ceiling hoists, providing relief to caregivers while enhancing the quality of life and independence of residents in their daily lives. The ceiling track above the residents' beds ensures that even with a deterioration in their condition and longer stays in bed, they do not have to change their familiar surroundings. The immediate possibility of lifting, repositioning, transferring, and mobilizing with the ceiling hoist simplifies the tasks of caregivers.
Between their uses, the hoists are parked simply and inconspicuously next to the beds in a homely closet - always charged, and ready for use.
Residents with dementia and other neurological conditions benefit from a visually calm and organized environment.
Too many sensory impressions often lead to disorientation, which, in turn, can result in challenging behaviour for residents. Therefore, all other aids, such as wheelchairs, can also find their place in the closet when not in use.
The installation of the ceiling hoist systems in the "Villagio Insieme" was realized in collaboration with Guldmann Italy and the interior design studio "Studio Tecnico Molinari." Rosa Di Natale, the General Director of the "S. Maria del Castello" Foundation behind the construction project, explains the motivation for this extraordinary care facility: "We want to show that people with Alzheimer's, dementia, and ALS are still people - that the disease is just one component."