A Night-Time Monitoring System (eNightLog) to Prevent Elderly Wandering in Hostels: A Three-Month Field Study

James Chung Wai Cheung, Eric Wing Cheung Tam, Alex Hing Yin Mak, Tim Tin Chun Chan, Yong Ping Zheng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Older people are increasingly dependent on others to support their daily activities due to geriatric symptoms such as dementia. Some of them stay in long-term care facilities. Elderly people with night wandering behaviour may lose their way, leading to a significant risk of injuries. The eNightLog system was developed to monitor the night-time bedside activities of older people in order to help them cope with this issue. It comprises a 3D time-of-flight near-infrared sensor and an ultra-wideband sensor for detecting human presence and to determine postures without a video camera. A threshold-based algorithm was developed to classify different activities, such as leaving the bed. The system is able to send alarm messages to caregivers if an elderly user performs unde-sirable activities. In this study, 17 sets of eNightLog systems were installed in an elderly hostel with 17 beds in 9 bedrooms. During the three-month field test, 26 older people with different periods of stay were included in the study. The accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of detecting non-assisted bed-leaving events was 99.8%, 100%, and 99.6%, respectively. There were only three false alarms out of 2762 bed-exiting events. Our results demonstrated that the eNightLog system is sufficiently accurate to be applied in the hostel environment. Machine learning with instance segmentation and online learning will enable the system to be used for widely different environments and people, with improvements to be made in future studies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2103
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 13 Feb 2022


  • Bed exiting
  • Dementia
  • Elderly
  • Elderly care hostel
  • Night monitoring
  • Nursing home
  • Remote sensing
  • Ultrawideband radar
  • Virtual constraint
  • Wandering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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