Today, Rendever announced the launch of a new interactive virtual reality application called The Connection Corner. The Connection Corner allows residents in senior living communities to come together and socialize with each other despite widespread lockdown measures across the industry. This is a platform advancement following several other recent pandemic-era features focusing on creating community, togetherness, and social bonds that in turn reduce loneliness, which is an epidemic that has been exacerbated by the onset of COVID-19.
The shared spaces and gathering areas of many senior living communities are empty and off-limits during this time, as residents are kept safely quarantined in their rooms and activities are limited to the hallway. The Connection Corner brings the community area directly into virtual reality, allowing residents to come together as avatars and enjoy “virtual” presence with fellow residents they haven’t been able to see since early March. Staff members have the ability to personalize avatars for each participant, ensuring residents ‘recognize’ one another in the virtual environment and feel connected to their peers. The virtual space is a warm, modern living room with plenty of seating, bookshelves, and inspiring artwork.
“The COVID-19 morbidity rate for older adults is between 10 and 27%, so our industry is taking physical distancing protocols very seriously. That said, it’s also imperative to remember that prolonged loneliness within this demographic is linked to a 30% increase in mortality rates. The Connection Corner empowers staff to deliver critical engagement opportunities, while continuing to keep residents healthy and safe,” says Kyle Rand, Cofounder and CEO of Rendever.
Rendever customer, Health PEI, was selected as a beta user prior to the launch of this new application. “The need to quarantine has been difficult, of course, but Rendever has been a real bright spot for our residents and patients. We have been amazed at how quickly they’ve released new features addressing the ‘new normal’ so that our community could continue to benefit from this amazing technology. The Connection Corner is simple in concept, but our residents and patients – particularly those that haven’t been able to visit friends on different floors, neighborhoods, or even in different buildings – are absolutely loving it,” says Paul Young, Administrator for Community Hospitals West, Health PEI.
The Connection Corner is the latest in a suite of Rendever’s platform features including two-way voice communication and live, expert-run sessions, that enables the use of social virtual reality across distances. To learn more, please visit rendever.com/covid19.
Rendever is overcoming social isolation through the power of virtual reality and shared experiences. From senior living communities to hospitals, their platform is being used to reduce depression and loneliness by fostering personal connections amongst populations where life has become limited. Participants in group sessions can check off bucket list items together, revisit meaningful places and share stories, stay engaged with family members, and more. Rendever is being used by high-profile senior living operators including Revera, Benchmark, and SRG, healthcare systems such as UCHealth and Cleveland Clinic, has research funded by the NIH and NIA, and has commercial partnerships with major organizations like AARP and Verizon.