Socially Assistive Robots Can Be Used as a Resource to Provide Social and Learning Skills Development for Children Diagnosed on the autism spectrum
ChartaCloud Robotics today announced that it has entered into an agreement with MOVIA, INC. of Bristol, Connecticut to offer MOVIA software for autism behavior intervention therapies using the NAO humanoid robot.
The company also stated that with the addition of MOVIA software it continues to lead in the provision of robot-based technologies for use in intervention therapy, social engagement skills development and special education needs for children with autism. The software uses the NAO humanoid robot which can speak 20 languages and is currently in use in over 50 countries around the world. NAO is a product of SoftBank Robotics.
"As a country, we are undoubtedly in the era of autism. The number of children, teenagers, adults and families impacted with autism are stunning. It is estimated that 1.4 million children and 700,000 adults are diagnosed with an autism," said Michael Radice, chairman technology advisory board, ChartaCloud | ROBOTTECA. "We need technologies that can help professional therapists and special education teachers in our schools respond to the increasing demand for specialized care. Multiple university-based research studies historically have pointed to the promise and value of social robots being used in autism therapies and interventions. MOVIA has been a leader in facilitating the transition of this understanding from university research to actual ABA (applied behavior analysis) guided use. Our agreement with MOVIA is another major step forward in advancing robot-mediated behavior intervention (RMBI)", Radice concluded.
"MOVIA is very excited to partner with ROBOTTECA to bring our robot-assisted educational solution to children on the autism spectrum. ROBOTTECA gives us tremendous access to this underserved market and we look forward to helping as many children as possible through our collaboration," added Timothy Gifford, MOVIA's founder and chief technology officer.
The company also stated that the CDC estimates that intensive autism therapy cost is between $30,000 and $60,000. per year, per child, a significant financial burden on families, schools and health care plans. University Research suggests that 40 hours of intervention therapy per week is an ideal target, which is a very difficult challenge for parents and care givers to meet and that robots can be a significant resource to both help lower costs and increase the effectiveness of time allocated to therapy.