Alzheimer's Foundation of America

Alzheimer's
Foundation of America

AFA’s Dementia Experience

AFA’s Dementia Experience offers a way to momentarily step into the shoes of someone living with Alzheimer’s disease.  Using Virtual Reality (VR) technology and an Oculus Go headset that provides a three-dimensional, 360 degree view with sound, participants enter the world of “Harry,” who is living with Alzheimer’s, and see how he experiences a variety of common symptoms associated with the disease.

AFA’s Dementia Experience can help care partners and families better understand what someone living with this disease may be going through.  This is an experience, not a simulation.  Each individual living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias experience their symptoms in a unique way.   What we create with this unique experience is an opportunity to educate and build empathy and understanding.

AFA’s Dementia Experience can be purchased by clicking the link below (purchase price is $300, headset is sold separately).  A licensing agreement, which will be provided by AFA staff, must be signed prior to receiving AFA’s Dementia Experience.  Please contact AFA’s Department of Educational and Social Services at 866-232-8484 or education@alzfdn.org if you have any questions or need additional information.

Click here to purchase AFA’s Dementia Experience

AFA’s Dementia Experience: Frequently Asked Questions

What format is AFA’s Dementia Experience provided in?

AFA’s Dementia Experience is provided as an MP4 file.

How will we receive the MP4 file?

The file will be sent to you on a USB device.  All users will go through an orientation where AFA will provide training on how to upload the file onto the headset.

Do the file and headset come together?

No, you are responsible for purchasing your own headset. AFA will provide the file for download, along with a variety of educational materials.

What type of headset do we need? We want to make sure we buy the right thing.

We recommend purchasing the Oculus Go 32 GB headset for this experience.

Where can I buy the Oculus Go headset?

The Oculus Go is available at various major retailers, such as Best Buy, Amazon, and Walmart.

Can the MP4 file be used on multiple headsets?

The file is a one-time purchase. Once you purchase and receive the file, you can add to as many headsets as you would like.  You do not need to purchase a new file for each headset.

What if I am having issues using the technology?

AFA provides basic instructions for use, but support with specific headset problems can be obtained through Oculus support.

How long is the experience?

The video runs for 3 minutes and 12 seconds. We recommend a one to one or small group discussion following the video, which is discussed in greater detail through the trainer orientation.

Are there any restrictions on who this tool is used for?

We do not recommend this experience for individuals living with dementia, individuals with seizure disorders, or individuals who have difficulty with 3D images.  Participant consent forms are provided and recommended for use.