A New Tool Applies Research to Assisted Living Design

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Health and Human Services
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$99,988.00
Award Year:
2004
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
1R43AG024786-01
Award Id:
71089
Agency Tracking Number:
AG024786
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
ARKITEX STUDIO, INC., 511 UNIVERSITY DR E, STE 201, COLLEGE STATION, TX, 77840
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
n/a
Principal Investigator:
ELTON ABBOTT
(979) 260-2635
EABBOTT@ARKITEX.COM
Business Contact:
(979) 260-2635
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The built environment can promote health by meeting the behavioral needs of residents in long-term care settings. Spending even moderate amounts of time outdoors can potentially benefit mental and physical health by increasing activity levels and providing contact with natural environments. Assisted living residents are known to value outdoor access and perceive health benefits, but are frequently discouraged from going outdoors by the design of outdoor areas and transition zones. With little or no increase in cost, the provider industry could design more successful outdoor access by applying environment-behavior principles, but the available information is not formatted in a way that is easily applied to facility design. This Phase I SBIR project will create an interactive multimedia educational tool to convey these principles to key decision makers in the assisted living industry, in a way that is easily understood and applied by developers, owner operators, architects, and planning officials. For Phase I, the Specific Aims are: Aim 1) Develop a single prototype learning module that conveys relevant behavioral information with examples, before-and-after, questions and exercises, Aim 2) Create an interactive computer-based tool for conveying this subject matter, as a multimedia instructional format on CD-ROM, and Aim 3) Evaluate the usability of the interface and the effectiveness of the instructional design, with representative target users. While Phase I will develop the subject matter and format for one learning module, Phase II will refine the format, conduct further research to confirm the primary behavioral principles, and create a comprehensive set of learning modules. The research conducted in Phase II will be useful to both researchers and designers in the field of evidence based therapeutic design. Phase ll will develop and market the product in collaboration with an established educational publisher, using distribution networks within the long-term care and healthcare design industries. Facilities applying the product will gain a competitive edge by better meeting the needs of residents. Because this innovative learning tool will be marketed aggressively and is highly application-oriented, it is expected to have a significant impact on future design of outdoor access at assisted living facilities.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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