The Importance of a Sensory-Motor Wayfinding System for Promoting Autonomy and Mobility on People with Low Vision Condition
Authors: Miguel de Aboim Borges, Fernando Moreira da Silva
Abstract: Some evidences related to demography will change the way we design built environment, mainly hospitals. The world is facing a situation without precedents, so that soon there will be more elderly of extreme old age than ever before. With a continuous decline in death rates and rising life expectancy among them, reaching 80 years and even over 100. Living longer with a better life quality doesn’t mean a healthier living, but a hospital care dependency related to health problems. We are facing a change of the demographic profile for which we must undertake a mentality readjustment in order to suit and give qualitative answer to these groups’ life. With an increasing ageing population, the burden of age-related sensory impairment is expected to increase. There is a growing interest in the effects of the physical environment on the health and well being of the elderly and disabled population. The research is being held in an ophthalmological hospital, where all kinds of eye pathologies are treated, though presenting difficulties in color discrimination and perception, incapacity of reading at distance and interpreting complex pictograms. For a structured and effective research a participatory design methodology is considered to evaluate patient’s low vision condition and working health professionals testimonials. Through observation, interviews and tests validating its results with groups of specialists. The final result will be the installation in this hospital of a sensory-motor wayfinding system (Percept Walk) reflecting the conclusion held in the research process.
Keywords: Percept Walk, low vision, wayfinding, kinesthetic perception, participatory design.
Cite this paper: