Emeritus Senior Living (NYSE:ESC) has launched a new communication app for its residents that is currently being rolled out through a pilot program across eight of its communities in the Midwest.
The app, called “My Emeritus,” was designed by the assisted living provider and Sitelligence with Emeritus customizing the app for its residents, and for each community.
The pilot program, which has launched the app in five communities and is live on resident iPads and touch screen computers in common areas, has already begun to measure a successful adoption rate of more than 85% among residents of those communities.
“The focus is twofold,” says Kelly Scott Lindstrom, vice president of program development and innovation for Emeritus. “First, for residents to be connected to family and friends who use the technology every day. One of our main goals is to create that connection and engagement. Then, to create that engagement within the community.”
Through the app, which can be accessed via wi-fi enabled tablets and computers, residents have the ability to connect with off-site family members as well as other residents through email and video chat and photo sharing. The app also serves as a new-age newsletter that allows residents to RSVP to community activities and events, access menus and calendars, and receive notifications. It also offers entertainment options including bingo games, 10,000 classic films and streams of 300 webcams worldwide allowing users to see live footage from Paris, London and other locations.
In order to familiarize residents with the hardware and software, Emeritus has held training classes within its communities that has also served as a way for staff to learn the technology.
“As there are challenges with anything new, we are making sure everyone is comfortable with the hardware and technology,” Lindstrom says. “We’re training residents and we are overcoming that fear of technology.”
Emeritus is measuring outcomes based on the pilot program, which first launched in August, and will use the outcomes to plan for a larger launch in more communities in the coming year.
The app is available at no cost, and the communities where it has been rolled out already have free wi-fi access for residents.
Written by Elizabeth Ecker