Topics on Aging

By Juan Gallo

How Heart2Heart is using technology to reach seniors in care centers

July 11, 2022

Back to the Future: How Heart2Heart is using technology to reach seniors in care centers

Heart2Heart is learning firsthand how to powerfully deploy technology to reach seniors who are isolated.

As we explore this topic of technology, I wanted to explain how our innovative iPads for Seniors program is already making a difference.

Earlier this year, we received a grant to purchase 250 Apple iPads, specifically to be used in care centers in Broward County. Each care center in the program receives at least five iPads to be shared among its residents.

When we deliver the iPads to the care centers, they are already programmed with the center’s Wifi password. As soon as an iPads turns on, it loads up the curated apps designed especially with seniors in mind. Our system recognizes the device by its serial number, allowing us to maintain the devices remotely.

When we deliver the iPads to the care centers, they are already programmed with the center’s Wifi password. As soon as an iPads turns on, it loads up the curated apps designed especially with seniors in mind.

On the simplified home screen, we have included training videos that our digital outreach coordinator filmed in-house. The videos break down how to use the iPads and get started with the specific apps that are already installed.

Video calls are especially user-friendly on the Heart2Heart iPads. Thanks to our partnership with Jamf, residents connect with their loved ones or a volunteer in only one step.

A senior opens the Virtual Visits app and types in a phone number or email address of the person they want to reach. The loved one then receives a message with a link. That link will automatically connect to a video call with the senior on the very iPad they’re holding, all while being HIPAA-compliant.

Care Centers have coordinated schedules with Heart2Heart Digital Volunteers to ensure they can meet with seniors in need of companionship at just the right time. The centers provide us with a fact sheet about each isolated senior so that the volunteer can ask starter questions so that the first conversation is not too awkward.

The funds for Heart2Heart’s new C.A.R.E. Tech Program were provided through a grant from The Salah Foundation. The Salah Foundation is a private foundation by invitation only.

Apple provided the iPads to Heart2Heart at a discounted rate. We also partnered with BFA Technologies to help us license and manage the devices and Jamf to create that user-friendly video call experience.

Our goal is to make connecting with isolated seniors as simple as possible. Read more stories about how iPads for Seniors program is making a difference here. 

If you’re interested in getting involved, find out more about becoming a Digital Volunteer.

Next week, we’ll share tips we’ve learned for getting seniors used to new technology.

 

 

Read more about:
Juan Gallo
Juan Gallo is the CEO of Heart2Heart Outreach, where he oversees the mobilization of volunteers to provide hope, share love and restore purpose to the lives of the aging population across South Florida.

He also serves as a local pastor and as an adjunct professor at Trinity International University, where he is teaching a course on diversity and aging. Juan has a master’s degree in counseling and psychology and is a licensed mental health counselor intern.

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