• Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024

Innovative Mobile App Set to Help Prevent Dementia in Older Chinese and Korean Americans: Research Team Awards Granted $500,000 by Korean Foundation”.


Feb 13, 2024
Funding Received for Mobile App by School of Public Health Team to Prevent Dementia in Asian Americans

A research team led by Dr. Junhyoung “Paul” Kim, an associate professor of health behavior at Texas A&M University’s School of Public Health, has been awarded a two-year grant from a Korean foundation to design mobile technology that helps prevent dementia in older Chinese American and Korean American adults. The project aligns with the National Institute on Aging’s priority to increase participation by Asian Americans in dementia care.

The team will gather preliminary data to support a larger randomized controlled trial that tests the effectiveness of a mobile app that focuses on cognitive function and quality of life for the target audience. Silvia Health, a company based in Seoul, South Korea that specializes in dementia prevention technology for older adults with limited English proficiency, will produce the app.

Previous research by the team showed that Silvia Health’s existing app improved memory, psychological health and quality of life for older Koreans who used it. The new study aims to collect data related to a proposed new app for older Chinese American and Korean American adults that includes home-based exercise, mindfulness and relaxation, cognitive activities and voice-based AI assessments. The app will be available in multiple languages with culturally appropriate content tailored for its intended users.

“Many Asian American adults were born outside the United States and have limited English proficiency,” said Kim, which prevents them from participating in dementia prevention programs. “Evidence suggests that this underserved immigrant population has similar or higher rates of cognitive impairment as nonimmigrant older adults.”

Kim’s goal is to reduce cultural barriers that prevent the diagnosis and treatment of cognitive decline and dementia in older Asian American adults through this research effort.

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