Article Abstract

Using intelligent, interactive LED lighting systems in the development of medical care for the elderly

Authors: Shang-Lin Hsieh, Chien-Hsuan Huang, Shou-Chuan Shih, Wen-Han Chang


Background: The age-related decline in vision among the elderly can lead to a reduced ability to adapt to glare stimulation, no longer being able to identify all parts of the chroma and taking longer to adapt to changes of light. This reduced vision can hinder the elderly’s activities, thus affecting their lifestyles. Figuring out how to assist the elderly through improving their lighting, especially to keep them from falling or colliding with things in general or whether in hospitals and nursing homes, has attracted considerable attention in the medical community.
Methods: A room was designed with adjustable lighting so elderly patients could find a visually comfortable level of light. The subjects had been collected in those equipped room between 1/1/2010 and 12/30/2010. At the start of the experiment, a questionnaire was administered in the fever observation room of the Mackay Memorial Hospital Emergency Room. This was used to understand how the lighting affected the patients. Another focus of the experiment was to save energy by using light-emitting diode (LED) lamps, which use less energy and can be configured to easily adjust their brightness. Considering medical staff and patients cannot be in a space with glare for extended periods, they have a higher need for an antiglare solution. Glare was reduced by using an intelligence lighting-control system (ILCS) by LED lamp, which has an array of light sources, equipped with a diffuser plate.
Results: Most patients were satisfied with the lighting environment created by the LED lamps. Among the 200 randomly selected patients, 92.5% of patients preferred the LED lighting to (P<0.001). The satisfaction with LED lighting among the 121 people over the age of 50 that indicated the LEDs were better at providing sufficient lighting (116/121, P<0.001) and better aided the patients in identifying the things around them (121/121, P<0.01).
Conclusions: The power measurements showed that LED lighting as a substitute for T5 lamps could save around 20% on energy and this return period would last about four years. There is a high potential for future growth as the popularity of LEDs rises and prices fall. It is widely accepted that LEDs can be used to improve the lighting environment for the elderly in medical institutions. The ILCS can ameliorate the lighting problem and help prevent the elderly from falling or having accidents due to insufficient lighting. LED lights have adjustable characteristics. Coupled with the design of the intelligent lighting sensing system, LEDs could be used to help elderly people all over the world cope with reduced vision. This is an important part of the development and application of LED lighting in the future.