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CareBuddy: Mobile Buddy for Caregivers with Dementia Patients

Dementia is a condition of the loss of cognitive functioning (i.e., thinking, reasoning, or remembering), disorientation and behaviour change that could lead to an individual’s increasing difficulties in coping with everyday activities. While most people with dementia (PWD) are taken care of by family caregivers in their homes or communities, these caregivers often lack proper coping strategies and intervention skills, as well as limited (timely) professional advice when caught in a situation.

CareBuddy is a knowledge-based decision support system that aims to empower dementia caregivers with recommended dementia care knowledge and intervention skills to cope with day-to-day challenging behavioural issues presented by PWD in the community. Leveraging decision support innovation and knowledge management methodology, the mobile application could offer timely and recommended care support for dementia caregivers based on their needs, thus enhancing the caregivers’ competence in dementia care and reducing stress during their caregiving experience.

  • Coping knowledge recommendation and caregiving decision support personalisation for dementia caregivers based on identified underlying triggers of behavioural issues
  • Dementia care knowledge repository validated by medical domain experts
  • Community service providers recommendation based on caregivers’ needs and PW’s frailty conditions
  • Trend and history analysis of PWD’s behavioural patterns
  • Collaborative caregiving support for two or more caregivers with the same PWD
  • Caregiving and observation notes sharing among collaborative caregivers
  • Efficient management of a comprehensive profile for PWD
The Science Behind

CareBuddy is implemented based on innovative decision support models and knowledge management repositories. The cumulative knowledge repository is designed and developed with medical domain experts’ validation. Specifically, we collaborate with geriatric clinic doctors, nurses and therapists to elicit implicit care knowledge with Agile methodology through iterative interviews and validations. Explicit care knowledge is also systematically extracted from various research articles and materials to cumulatively establish the overall care knowledge repository. During the knowledge extraction process, ontology (Fig 1) is generated using protégé to facilitate the creation of the dementia care knowledge repository and ensure efficient knowledge transfer to caregivers. 

Meanwhile, decision support models are designed to identify the underlying triggers of behavioural patterns presented by PWD, and recommend proper intervention coping skills to caregiver. Our technology integrates PWD’s personal information into the decision support models (i.e., personality, personal preferences, family dynamics, etc.) so that the recommended coping solutions are soundly made to cater for caregivers’ and PWD’s specific needs. 

Industry Applications

CareBuddy is a knowledge-based decision support system which could empower caregivers with the recommended care knowledge and patient management in a timely and collaborative manner and could also be applied to other healthcare domains such as: 

  • Eye Care
  • Mental Health
  • Parkinson
  • Stroke