Science in Action: Teen creates wearable device for Alzheimer patients

Kenneth Shinozuka, aged 15, designed a wearable alert device for Alzheimer patients that helps alert caregivers if the patient starts to wander.
KennethShinozukaCongratulations to Kenneth Shinozuka, winner of the third annual $50,000 Scientific American Science in Action Award, powered by the Google Science Fair, for his project “Wearable Sensors: A Novel Healthcare Solution for the Aging Society.”

Kenneth’s grandfather suffers from Alzheimer’s disease and he would wander regularly. Kenneth saw how his aunt would struggle to cope. “About two years ago, my grandfather started wandering out of bed, which caused a lot of accidents,” he says. “My aunt had to stay awake all night to keep an eye on him and, even then, often failed to catch him leaving the bed.”

Kenneth, who lives in the Bronx, designed super-slim sensors, attached to a foot or in a sock, which can alert caregivers via their smart phone if a patient begins to wander.

The Scientific American Science in Action Award, in its third year of operation, honours a project that can make a practical difference by addressing an environmental, health or resources challenge. The winning entry is innovative, easy to put into action and reproducible in other communities. In addition to the prize, Scientific American will fly the Science in Action winner to the finalist awards event at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., in September 2014, and will establish mentoring for a year to support further project improvements.

You can also read a Q&A with Kenneth here.

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Jill is one of the co-founders of Mykidstime and a mum of 2 girls