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Older Adults’ Perceptions of and Preferences for a Fall Risk Assessment System: Exploring Stages of Acceptance Model

Galambos, Colleen PhD, ACSW, LCSW, LCSW-C; Rantz, Marilyn PhD, RN, FAAN; Back, Jessie MSW; Jun, Jung Sim MSW; Skubic, Marjorie PhD; Miller, Steven J. MA

CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing: July 2017 - Volume 35 - Issue 7 - p 331–337
doi: 10.1097/CIN.0000000000000330

Aging in place is a preferred and cost-effective living option for older adults. Research indicates that technology can assist with this goal. Information on consumer preferences will help in technology development to assist older adults to age in place. The study aim was to explore the perceptions and preferences of older adults and their family members about a fall risk assessment system. Using a qualitative approach, this study examined the perceptions, attitudes, and preferences of 13 older adults and five family members about their experience living with the fall risk assessment system during five points in time. Themes emerged in relation to preferences and expectations about the technology and how it fits into daily routines. We were able to capture changes that occurred over time for older adult participants. Results indicated that there was acceptance of the technology as participants adapted to it. Two themes were present across the five points in time—safety and usefulness. Five stages of acceptance emerged from the data from preinstallation to 2 years postinstallation. Identified themes, stages of acceptance, and design and development considerations are discussed.

Author Affiliations: School of Social Work (Dr Galambos and Ms Jun), Sinclair School of Nursing (Dr Rantz and Mr Miller), and Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (Dr Skubic), University of Missouri, Columbia. Ms Back is in private practice in Columbia, MO.

This research was supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research Quality grant number RO1HS018477.

The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationship with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

Corresponding author: Colleen Galambos, PhD, ACSW, LCSW, LCSW-C, School of Social Work, University of Missouri, 7th Floor Clark Hall, Columbia, MO 65211 (

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