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Ecumen Applauds GE-Intel Partnership in Helping United States Ride the Age Wave With Empowerment Technology
Date:4/2/2009

Minnesota-based Ecumen Featured in Today's GE-Intel Announcement

MINNEAPOLIS-ST. PAUL, April 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Ecumen, one of the country's most innovative senior housing and services providers, and an early adopter of technology to help seniors enhance their lives, applauds today's $250 million partnership between GE and Intel. Ecumen was featured in today's GE-Intel announcement for its adoption of personal empowerment technology.

"Ecumen envisions a world in which aging is viewed and understood in radically different ways, and the unprecedented aging of America demands new, innovative solutions," said Kathy Bakkenist, Ecumen's chief operating officer and senior vice president of strategy and operations, who participated in the announcement. "Personal empowerment technology is essential to the new frontier of aging, and we applaud GE and Intel for seeing and embracing that future."

Bakkenist also is public policy chair for the Center for Aging Services Technologies (CAST), an international coalition of more than 400 technology companies, aging services organizations, research universities, and government representatives working to expedite the development, evaluation and adoption of emerging technologies that can improve the aging experience.

Ecumen was one of the first senior housing and services providers to adopt QuietCare technology by General Electric. It is used in all Ecumen assisted living communities. GE QuietCare(R) is a remote passive activity and behavioral monitoring system for seniors, alerting care professionals to changes that may signal potential health issues or emergency situations such as a fall or emerging health problem.

Other technologies Ecumen has adopted include [m]Power Cognitive fitness technology; CareTracker wireless charting; Ivivi SofPulse, which uses electromagnetic waves to help heal difficult wounds; and Wii by Nintendo for rehabilitation purposes and social engagement. Ecumen is currently evaluating other technologies to empower seniors.

"Human beings are hardwired for independence, not institutionalization," says Bakkenist. "This partnership highlights how aging is changing in America, and the incredible opportunity we have to combine high touch and high tech in a fully integrated health care system that empowers and honors people's individuality."

Ecumen is based in Shoreview, Minn. Its mission is to create home for older adults wherever they choose to live. Ecumen provides a wide range of senior housing and services. It also provides senior housing development and consulting services. Read Ecumen's Changing Aging blog at www.ecumen.org.


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