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Socially Assistive Robots for Dementia Care: Exploring Caregiver Perceptions of Use Cases and Acceptance
SessionvS2/A: Risk and Fatigue
DescriptionAs the older population increases, the proportion of persons living with dementia (PWD) is likely to increase, while the ratio of caregiver to care receiver is declining. To address the rising demand on healthcare professionals and care partners of PWD, socially assistive robots (SAR) can potentially facilitate care provision. It is crucial to understand the divergent tasks of health care professionals vs. care partners, so the SAR’s intervention can meet caregiver’s needs. This qualitative study investigated and compared both groups of caregivers’ acceptances of a SAR. Six use cases of a SAR (NAO, SoftBank) were demonstrated to both care provider groups (N=20 total). Both groups expressed willingness to adopt such technology and found that it could be useful in dementia care. However, participants’ perceptions varied by task. Results indicate that healthcare professionals focused more on the assistive aspects, whereas care partners focused more on the social aspects of the SAR.