Older adults’ experiences and perceptions of living with Bomy, an assistive dailycare robot: a qualitative study

Norina Gasteiger, Ho Seok Ahn, Christine Fok, Jong Yoon Lim, Christopher Lee, Bruce A. MacDonald, Geon Ha Kim, Elizabeth Broadbent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

An aging global population and preference for aging-in-place pose the opportunity for home-based robots to assist older adults with their daily routines. However, there is limited research into the experiences of older adults using robots in their own homes. In this descriptive qualitative feasibility study, older self-supporting and community-dwelling adults with various age-related health needs used Bomy, a dailycare robot in their homes for up to one week. The study explored the usefulness of the robot and participants’ perceptions and experiences of using it. Bomy reminded them of daily activities and delivered cognitive stimulation games. Semi-structured in-person interviews were conducted, and data were analyzed thematically. Findings revealed an acceptance toward robots and the value of assistive dailycare robots. Participants perceived Bomy as a companion and made suggestions for improvement, including resolving technical issues associated with long-term use. Future functions should be personalizable, to accommodate each user’s health needs and could also include smoke detection and reading aloud functions. Dailycare robots show promising potential in elderly care, especially in providing reminders for medication, health and wellbeing. This study highlights the importance of co-design and testing robotics in the environments for which they have been developed. Widespread implementation of Bomy might be feasible in the future, with some further adjustments.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAssistive Technology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • assistive robots
  • feasibility
  • geriatric
  • human-robot interaction
  • older adults

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