November 15, 2021

- Listen to Ron's Interview with Michael Potteiger and Robin Lombardo - 

‘Digital Therapeutics’: A New Way to Treat People with Dementia

Episode description:

About a decade ago, Michael Potteiger and his sister, Nacole, decided to teach their 85-year-old grandmother how to use an iPad. Not only did their Gram learn how, but she is still an active iPad user and loves seeing her grand (and great) grandchildren on FaceTime. Inspired by “Gram the Great,” Michael and Nacole founded Generation Connect, a cutting-edge firm that integrates health care with technology to help people with dementia, their families and their caregiving team through “digital therapeutics”—the use of technology as a tool to implement effective non-drug therapy treatments. In today’s episode, as part of National Family Caregivers Month, we talk with Michael and Robin Lombardo, Generation Connect’s director of business development, about their commitment to senior care and to developing new tools for the caregiving community. Michael has spent his entire career working in technology consulting, and today he continues to work closely with seniors, their families, and care organizations to better understand how technology can help support care teams. Robin, a geriatric and dementia specialist, is a veteran of the senior care field, serving in leadership positions in various healthcare settings and at nationally recognized nonprofits for people with Alzheimer's Disease and other dementias. Having exclusively worked with older adults, it is her passion to foster joy in their lives. Together, Michael and Robin will explain how Generation Connect provides a system of mobile apps, tablets, digital engagement and reporting features to help home care providers improve well-being and enhance caregiver relationships through personalized therapeutic routines and rituals. And while they believe that technology can greatly enhance the caregiving experience, technologists, too, have much to learn from the caregiving community. Thus, research remains a central component to Generation Connect’s mission, and Michael and Robin will describe their ongoing research and key findings from studies around the country—and their views on how technology will profoundly affect the future of health care.

Guest descriptions:

Michael Potteiger is the Chief Operating Officer of Generation Connect, which he co-founded with his sister, Nacole, in 2013. They were inspired to pursue a career in aging after teaching their 85-year-old grandmother how to use an iPad. Michael loves working at the intersection of caregiving and technology. (He still Facetimes “Gram the Great” regularly.) He has spent his entire career working in technology consulting, and leverages his knowledge of mobile device deployment, product design, data collection, and project management to help caregiving organizations deploy tablets. Michael feels passionate about building tools for the caregiving community—the families that make difficult sacrifices and the frontline healthcare teams taking on challenging situations. He believes that technology can help enhance the caregiving experience in profound ways, but at the same time, technologists have so much to learn from the caregiving community. Michael graduated with a degree in Health and Exercise Science from Wake Forest University.

Robin Lombardo is the Director of Business Development for Generation Connect.  A veteran of the senior care industry, Robin has served in leadership positions in a variety of healthcare settings and at nationally recognized nonprofits for people with Alzheimer's disease and other dementias. Having been raised with both grandmothers at home, Robin knew that this generation had gifts to give beyond measure: to love, be loved and appreciated for all they have to offer.  She helped co-author the college-accredited Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias ® training program for professional caregivers, which since has successfully trained over 1,000 caregivers. Robin is a Master Level Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist and a Certified Dementia Practitioner. Her research has been published in the academic journal Visions in Leisure and Business, and she co-authored a recent article in the “Dementia Journal” publication Fall 2018. She has given numerous presentations at  conferences on  dementia-related topics, including Oxford University Roundtable on Aging in the UK, and the 2018 World Alzheimer’s Summit Keynote in Boston.

Here are two interesting short videos about Generation Connect and dementia care:

        Care Team Connect Mobile App: Supporting Caregiver Connections

        The Good News about Dementia Care        


Michael Potteigger:

Robin Lombardo:


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