The ORCATECH Council is an organization of researchers who began meeting quarterly in 2004 with 20 members and now has grown to over 50 members.

This membership represents a wide spectrum of individual expertise, institutional representation and stakeholder input. Members come from diverse backgrounds, including architecture, healthcare and community advocacy, intellectual property law, biotechnology development, social gerontology and primatology.

The ORCATECH Council has been fundamental to the success of the Center.

ORCATECH Council Meetings

The next ORCATECH Council Meeting is on Friday, March 8th from 9AM - 1PM.

The guest speakers will be: 

Noshad Rahimi, MBA, Ph.D., Project Program Management - Kaiser Permanente
Presentation Title: Developing a Mixed-Methods Method to Model Elderly Health Technology Adoption with Fuzzy Cognitive Map, and its Application in Adoption of Remote Health Monitoring Technologies by Elderly Women
Low adoption of health technologies, particularly among elderly women, who represent the majority of the elderly population keeps them from benefiting from technology advances. There is a call to arms for novel approaches that facilitate the creation of models that expand technology adoption theories to the specifics of elderly health technology adoption. In response, this research applies qualitative and quantitative techniques including fuzzy cognitive mapping and network analysis to design a novel mixed-methods modeling approach and apply the method to the adoption of wearables by elderly women as a case-in-point. 

Charles Consel, Inria / Bordeaux Institute of Technology
Presentation Title: HomeAssist: An Assisted Living Platform for Aging in Place Based on An Interdisciplinary Approach
To address the many challenges of aging in place, we have been conducting an interdisciplinary research project aimed to design, develop, deploy, and assess an assisted living platform for frail older adults, named HomeAssist. This platform leverages expertise in psychology and aging, human factors, and computer science. HomeAssist offers an online catalog of assistive applications, covering daily activities, safety, and social participation. HomeAssist was used in a field study; participants found it highly usable and had a highly positive user experience.


If you are interested in attending or presenting at an ORCATECH Council Meeting, please contact Nora Mattek at .

Selected Council presentations

Martina Mancini, PhD, Balance Disorders Laboratory, Assistant Professor of Neurology, OHSU
Technology for aging and neurodegeneration: where we are and where to go

Dr. Mancini's research focus is on using wearable technologies to characterize movement and brain activity in aging and neurodegeneration. Particular interests is on integration of sensory information while walking in people with cognitive or movements impairments. Objective metrics of movements are here combined with neurophysiological information to determine optimal variable(s) to integrate with biofeedback, resulting in more effective rehabilitation intervention.

Antoine Piau MD, PhD
Frailty monitoring, an overview of ongoing projects in Toulouse University Hospital

Toulouse University Hospital is responsible for the development of a national frailty network. Frailty screening is primarily based on the general practitioner’s detection via a short survey. Therefore, they can address their patients to a ‘geriatric day hospital for assessment of frailty and prevention of disability’ (GDHF) for a comprehensive assessment and a personalized intervention plan. A major weakness of this network is the lack of seamless follow-up over time. We are developing several tools to monitor frailty parameters over time at home: a smart insole to monitor gait speed and activity (RESPECT), several connected devices to follow grip strength and balance over time (FRAGIL-IT) but also smart home solutions for isolated frail person’s tele-assistance (3PEGASE).

Melinda Davis, PhD, Oregon Rural Practice-based Research Network at OHSU
Clinician Perceptions of Aging Services Technologies (CPAST)

Dr. Davis presented a summary (and its subsequent publication) of her ORCATECH pilot project to determine the monitoring needs of, optimal communication formats for, and infrastructure required to enable primary care clinicians to incorporate data from in-home monitoring technologies into routine care for older adult patients. This project sought to address a key gap in the research literature by investigating primary care clinician views toward monitoring technologies. Because clinicians and patients in remote and rural areas may be the most likely to benefit from monitoring technologies, this study was conducted with rural primary care clinician members of a practice-based research network in Oregon.

Sharon and Howard Johnson, Age Friendly Innovation Associates
Age-Friendly Innovation in Southern Oregon: You Had Me At Hello!

Age Friendly Innovation Associates is dedicated to advancing creative solutions for older adults interested in healthier and more independent living in a home of their own. Sharon and Howard Johnson, recent retirees, with a vast amount of innovative energy and a story to tell, discussed designing and building age-friendly homes using a “nested” neighborhood concept. Their homes have received the first-in-Oregon “Lifelong Housing Certification.” Their story goes beyond home-building as they have also designed and are beta testing a “In-Home Risk Assessment Tool” and host a monthly television program, Age-Friendly Rogue Valley.”

Don Young, TI Works
Collaborative Medicine Adherence

This SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) project focuses on a technology to confirm whether medications have actually been taken out of the pillbox. The key components of the system are MediCam devices that apply existing low-cost video conferencing technology in a novel and highly constrained manner to address privacy and ease-of-use concerns. The associated software captures an image history and presents reports that encourage the collaborators to discuss how to improve adherence. TI Works, Inc., will collaborate with ORCATECH to accelerate the work. This will build upon their expertise, processes, Health Coaching Platform infrastructure, and patient population. To verify feasibility, experiments will be conducted with a small number of home- resident senior citizens that are already participants in ORCATECH’s health coaching project. This new dimension of intervention is likely to have both adherence and socialization benefits.

Jerry Wiant, Perpetua Designs
Power Technologies in a Home Environment

Perpetua designs, manufactures, and markets renewable energy solutions for wireless sensors. They are focused on offering cost effective and easy-to-integrate power products that last as long as the sensor electronics. By extending battery life, or replacing batteries altogether, their products enable sensors to collect more data over a given time period and offer opportunities to effectively operate in a wider range of environments. Supporting these goals, Perpetua has developed the most advanced Flexible Thermoelectric Film™ technology available. Perpetua’s product lines incorporate this advanced technology into both stand-alone and integrated power solutions. This presentation will discuss some of the technologies they are developing and how they might integrate/impact aging in place.

For More Information

If you are interested in receiving slides for previous ORCATECH Council presentations, please email .