Nursing Homes: A Cure For Incontinence?

Electronic Underpants could bring an end to incontince related complications in nursing homes.

We at the Mininno Law Firm are advocates for health and safety in nursing homes. We applaud any and all uses of technology that could improve the quality of life for patients in nursing homes and convalescent centers. Anything these facilities can employ that will help prevent bedsores, patient falls, and prolonged pain or discomfort , is something this firm stands behind. That is why we post this blog about a new technology that could potentially end patient complications due to incontinence.

The product, developed in Australia and focused on incontinence management, could change the way elderly citizens are cared for. Simavita, a “company established to develop solutions that improve quality of life across the global spectrum,” has been developing the product for the last ten years. Simavita’s “SIMsystem” is a new continence aid that will revolutionize the way caretakers handle patient continence. SIMsystem, or Smart Incontinence Management System, will work towards four separate goals:

1. To limit the time patients spend in soiled undergarments.
2. To limit the time caregivers spend on incontinence management.
3. To use the data collected by the SIMsystem to schedule bathroom visits to eventually prevent events on incontinence.
4. To limit costs for facilities on incontinence consumables.

How Does it Work?

The product is, in laymen’s terms, a pair of electronic underpants. Under a disposable pad lies a sensor strip that measures frequency and level of incontinence. Ultimately, the use of the sensor strip is imperative to prevention of incontinent events. The entire system works as a 4 step process through the SIMserver.

1. An incontinent event is read by the SIMbox.
2. The event is recorded on the computer at the time that it occurs.
3. The caregiver is notified over the facilities paging system, or via SMS text message to a mobile phone or pager.
4. The caregiver tends to the patient implementing required procedure, and the intervention is recorded via the SIMbox.

The Chief Executive of Simavita, Phillipa Lewis, says:

Incontinence Management is a key area in which innovative technologies can benefit aged care. We developed SIMsystem to provide greater comfort and dignity to the elderly while aiming to significantly lower costs for aged care facilities.

When asked about the safety of the product, Lewis called the product “completely safe,” using very low power as well as the accepted form of wireless technology for body worn products. Some naysayers have commented on the ethics of the new invention, claiming that the tracking portion of the system is an invasion of privacy that may work to diminish dignity, rather than the opposite.
In the end, however, it seems that removing patients from incontinence pads and gaining them some form of freedom does much more to build dignity than the tracking does to take it away.

Incontinence is a very time consuming aspect of a nurse or caregivers job. It’s often necessary to for caretakers to check for incontinence upwards of ten times a day. The SIMsystem will potentially cut the time spent on incontinence management in half, freeing up time to pay attention to other dire needs of patients.
With this new technology, currently being used only in care facilities in Australia, the quality of life for elderly patients in nursing homes and convalescent centers will gradually and greatly improve.It’s not really clear how long it will be before the SIMsystem is being used world wide, but hopefully, it will be soon. Far too many of our elderly citizens are being victimized by their own incontinence, and by nursing home attendants not providing the proper care and attention.

Has Your Loved One Been Victimized by Nursing Home Abuse?

If you or a loved one have suffered from this kind of negligence at a nursing home or care facility, you need help. A New Jersey trial attorney will help you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact us to fill out a free case evaluation form, or call us at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia for a free consultation.