According to the CDC, nearly a quarter of adults 65 and older are considered to be socially isolated. This can put their physical health at risk, leading to increased risk of dementia, heart disease, depression and even premature death.

Greg Olsen, Director of the NYS Office for the Aging, joined NY1 to share details on ElliQ, the robot companion that helps seniors combat isolation and loneliness.

The pilot program is in partnership with Intuition Robotics, the company that developed ElliQ. New York City is getting 165 units in the city to help measure its effectiveness to improve health and overall wellbeing.

The robot helps monitor depression, it can make referrals, it can look at a senior’s hydration and sleep, connect them to grandkids, connect them to community-based services and more.

If you’re chosen by the state, ElliQ is free. If you’re not eligible for the state’s program, you can order one.