Aalst welcomes very first smart lamps in ALF ‘Gerstjens’

May, 4th 2022
By: Nobi

Aalst,  May 2022 – A very symbolic lamp was lit in ALF ‘Gerstjens’ this morning. The first Nobi smart lamps will support care staff in the coming years by monitoring the well-being of the residents 24/7. On the one hand, the lamps will contribute to even more focused care; on the other hand, they will also relieve the 40 care workers from repetitive tasks and give them more room to focus on tasks that really make a difference in the lives and happiness of the residents. The purchase of Nobi lamps is a very conscious choice by ALF ‘Gerstjens’, which wants to continue to guarantee quality care for the elderly at all times despite the Silver Tsunami that is increasing the pressure on caregivers day by day. “The sector currently has more than 6,000 vacancies that remain unfilled. Technology will play an increasingly important role in the coming years,” says Mathieu De Wulf, director of ALF ‘Gerstjens’

From busy caregivers to warm contacts

With Nobi, ALF ‘Gerstjens’ wants to relieve busy care workers as much as possible by taking over repetitive tasks. This frees up valuable time for tasks that really make a difference in the lives and happiness of older adults. Take, for example, Nobi’s integration with devices like smart scales or blood pressure monitors that provide additional insight into residents’ health and allow for the automatic input of the otherwise time-consuming manual input of measurement results. Nobi helps staff members so that they are no longer ‘behind the times’, gives them more control over the safety and well-being of residents and will eventually help predict where things might go wrong with the health of residents, so that preventative action can be taken. 


‘Technology as an important partner of my employees’

Mathieu De Wulf, director of ALF ‘Gerstjens’: “For me, Nobi’s lamp symbolises looking to the future, of looking at what is possible, of believing that, despite a difficult context, we can do more and more for the happiness of our residents. I have been in contact with assisted living facilities since I was 12, from my father’s assisted living facility. I consciously chose to continue my father’s ambition to develop assisted living facilities where people can grow old with dignity, safety and true happiness.” 

But this has not been easy in recent years. The number of older adults continues to rise, and our sector is losing committed employees every day. This puts even more pressure on the remaining employees. “I could mope about that, but I decided not to. At ALF ‘Gerstjens’, we look ahead and focus our energy on solutions. I see technology as an important partner of my employees that enables them to provide even more focused care to our residents. I look forward to the future with confidence. The dark clouds of an ageing population may be hanging right over our heads, but I will not let its shadow fall over my assisted living facility under any circumstances.”

Pilot project results are encouraging

Nobi is a self-learning lamp. In practice, this means that the lamp needs a few weeks to function optimally. The results of the pilot project during the first weeks were positive. Since the beginning of the pilot project, Nobi detected more than 40 falls in the 15 rooms in which it was tested. The residents were helped within 5 minutes on average. For some residents, this meant the difference between life and death. For others, this speed saved several quality years of life. After all, the speed with which help is provided is crucial. The longer older adults lay on the floor, the more quality years they lose. The pilot project in ALF ‘Gerstjens’ was an important test for CARE-ION, the care group to which ‘Gerstjens’ belongs. Johan Maris, COO at CARE-ION: “The future of elderly care begins today. We focus on increasingly targeted, individual care at CARE-ION and strive to create a real ‘home’ for our residents. Technology and innovation are important accelerators that can make a big difference to residents and employees. Nobi’s results prove this. The roll-out of Nobi’s smart lamps will be evaluated in the coming months at our sites where innovation within elderly care is central.”

Responding to the many unreported falls 

The official switching on of Nobi lamps is an important moment for ALF ‘Gerstjens’ and for Nobi. Roeland Pelgrims, co-CEO of Nobi: “After two years of development, we can finally put theory into practice with Nobi. Thanks to CARE-ION, we can not only help older adults even faster after a fall and thus save as many quality years of life as possible. We also help caregivers detect incidents that would have remained under the radar until today. For example, we know that many older adults who were able to get up independently after a fall do not always report their fall to their caregivers. Either out of shame or because they do not realise that smaller – seemingly innocent – incidents can sometimes have major consequences. The number of falls detected by Nobi during our initial pilot project confirms this. With Nobi, Mathieu and his team can now provide help more quickly after a fall. They also have a good overview of all falls, including the smaller incidents that would otherwise only have come to light months later when it’s often too late.”

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