Today, a VA Augusta Health Care System inventor who's developed a device to help prevent falls shared her innovation with organizations who advocate for aging populations across Georgia.
Ebony Dillard, physical therapy assistant and inventor of the D.E.B., a device used to improve gait, efficiency, and balance for Veterans with lower-limb weakness, presented her invention at an event hosted by Georgia's Area Agency on Aging.
“It's important to share this innovation with the aging population because they are a relatively large group who experience generalized weakness, secondary to lack of mobility, or other underlying conditions," said Ebony Dillard, whose patent-pending device is showing dramatic results with Veteran patients.
Kelsey Shull, a VA Augusta Innovation Specialist and Human-Centered Design Lead for VHA Innovators Network (iNET), provided insight into the bigger picture of innovation at VA and how frontline health care professionals, with support from iNET, can continue to create breakthroughs that shake up the health care industry.
"We are also excited to work with community partners to solve problems facing Veterans and the community at large," said Shull. "We hope to bridge gaps within communities by partnering with those who represent them, by bringing awareness to VA’s past contributions to health care innovation, and by supporting frontline employees problem solving in today’s health care industry."
Leaders spanning multiple organizations across Georgia were eager to see the D.E.B. in person, including the CSRA Area Agency on Aging, the Georgia Council on Aging, and Taking Elder Abuse Seriously.
“The weight balances it, and the magnets repel, so it helps you to maintain that balance you are trying to achieve,” said Don Strong, CSRA Coalition of Advocates for Georgia’s Elderly and Quality In-Home Care Inc. president, who strapped the D.E.B. device on to demonstrate the functionality for the group.
“By continuing to build public-private partnerships, we hope to create a broader network of advocates who can help Veterans and the public to create aging solutions for all,” Shull said.