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Spanish AmIVital project to develop intelligent devices for elderly and disabled

– Spanish AmIVital project to develop intelligent devices for elderly and disabled

Grenada, Spain. The AmIVital project aims to create a wide range of devices especially designed and adapted to the elderly and to people with disabilities or reduced mobility. These include intelligent devices, biosensors, portable systems (integrated into the human body or into clothes), ubiquitous wireless networks, multimodal interfaces (PCs, PDAs, telephones, etc.).

It will develop both specific ready-to-use products, and also set up a technological platform comprising device, network and standardized computer programme components that will make it simpler to create services adapted to different needs and environments.

The project, AmIVital: digital personal environment for health and wellbeing, is a cooperation effort between technology companies, research groups and the private sector. Seventeen Spanish information and communication technology companies and research groups participate in AmIVital. From the private sector, Siemens will be the leader of the project and other companies include Telefónica R&D, Telvent Interactiva, Ericsson Spain, Eptron, CPI – Central de Procesos Informáticos, Acerca Comunicaciones y Sistemas and Arizone.

Public stakeholders will include the association ITACA – Instituto de Aplicaciones de las TIC Avanzadas (TSB Group), CARTIF Foundation, Hospital Universitario Puerta de Hierro Biomedical Research Foundation, Rioja Salud Foundation, Carlos III Health Institute and the universities of Malaga, Polytechnic of Madrid, Saragossa and Granada, through its department of Computer Architecture headed by professor Alberto Prieto Espinosa. The Spanish Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Trade has also granted €20m to the project.

The official presentation of the project took place on 8 May 2007 at the University of Granada (Universidad de Granada).

Granada was chosen as the city to launch AmIVital because of its high concentration of companies and regional public research bodies, as well as due to the support provided to the project by the Andalusian Regional Government through its department of Innovation, Science and Business.

The public telecommunications company SADETEL will pilot technology with patients in Andalusia who are already users of remote assistance services provided by the Regional Government.

The head of the AmIVital project, also head of the SIEMENS Organization and Research department, Luis F. Reigosa Gago, and the head of the Telefónica R&D Centre in Granada, Luis Carlos Fernandez Gonzalez, stated that even though the project will be developed throughout the next four years, “the first results and their direct application to patients will take place in the short run”.