Google Nest Hub Project

Google Nest Hub Project

Google Nest HubDuring January and February of 2021 Eleanor and I have been working with Dr. Michelle Porter, Director of the Centre of Aging, University of Manitoba, and Julie Terenne-Maynard, Executive Director, Manitoba Association of Residential and Community Care Homes for the Elderly on formulating a project using technology to reduce the isolation of personal care home residents. Isolation has become an even bigger problem in personal care homes and for the elderly in general during the Covid Pandemic.

We have felt the impact of Covid on our ability to visit with Eleanor’s brother who was in a personal care home suffering from Parkinson’s disease. Prior to March of 2020 we would visit him every 10 days or so. Beginning in the middle of March 2020 our access was reduced to nearly nil. He died on November 3rd, 2020 and from March to November you could see (when we were able to visit in person or by telephone) the impact of the forced isolation on his health. We would like to have had a technology whereby we could have visited him virtually. It was only after he died that we became aware of communication devices that could be directed by voice commands.

We had been looking for a project for our endowment fund to help the elderly, especially those who are isolated. We contacted Julie Terenne-Maynard and she connected us with Michelle Porter. We were then introduced to Google Nest Hub technology; where you can ask the Google Assistant to play music, watch photos and videos, find a recipe, make an audio or audio visual chat call, tell you a joke, get the news, weather and sports scores, and much more.

The project started to take shape in early February, 2021 when Google Nest Hubs and Nest Hub Max’s that had been ordered arrived. They are to be placed in 9 care homes for evaluation purposes. I bought a Nest Hub Max for Eleanor for Christmas and we are having lots of fun learning what it can do.

Coincidentally, in the spring of 2020 Google began giving Nest Hub Max’s to seven facilities in the Merril Gardens Senior Living Communities chain in the Seattle area. They plan on giving 1000 units to this organization for evaluation and I believe they are close now to meeting that goal.

We will be evaluating our project in the spring of 2022.

Google Nest