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STTR Phase I: Transfer Training Device to Reduce Falls and Increase Mobility in Older Adults

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2223163
Agency Tracking Number: 2223163
Amount: $272,263.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: MD
Solicitation Number: NSF 22-551
Solicitation Year: 2022
Award Year: 2023
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2023-07-15
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-12-31
Small Business Information
232 N Poplar St
Tamaroa, IL 62888
United States
HUBZone Owned: Yes
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Blake Terry
 (618) 571-2917
Business Contact
 Blake Terry
Phone: (618) 571-2917
Research Institution
 Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
United States

 Nonprofit College or University

The broader impact/commercial potential of this Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I project is a novel walker with active corrective feedback and training protocols enabling patients the ability to reliably and repeatedly transition from a seated position to a standing posture. Falls among elderly adults are the leading cause of injury resulting in 3 million emergency room visits and 800,000 hospitalizations.These accidents account for $50 billion in direct medical costs each year. This project aims to develop a novel device which directly improves the sit-to-stand (STS) transfer phase which accounts for 41% of falls in elderly and/or cognitively impaired adults. Over half of individuals using walkers currently do not receive the proper assistive-device utilization training due to varying therapist techniques, communication, environment, or the patient's cognitive abilities._x000D_
This Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I project aims to develop a device for ensuring a safer and more consistent transition from a sit-to-stand posture in patients using front-wheel walkers. Current sit-to-stand training relies solely upon verbal therapist instruction or demonstration and often results in lack of consistency in delivery. The proposed device integrates biomechanical measurements, trained therapist observations, and patient auditory and visual feedback, in conjunction with an educational and training protocol, to ensure proper patient biomechanics, in a semi-autonomous manner.A prototype system will be developed and validated in a patient proof of concept study demonstrating consistent and reliable posture changes in order to significantly reduce the risks for falls and injuries, while reducing emotional and physical demands on patients and caregivers._x000D_
This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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