A new language called Blink to Speak aims to improve the lives of people with paralysis and have difficulty with speech, and recently won the Health Grand Prix for Good at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. The guide outlines a new language that uses eye movements for communication for people with paralysis. The language was created by Dr. Hemangi Sane, Founder and President of Asha Ek Hope Foundation and Deputy Director of DueirGen Brain and Spine Institute in Mumbai, India.
The new language aims to overcome hurdles that paralyzed patients have. While there are currently systems that help paralyzed people communicate, they are typically quite expensive, so they aren’t available to everyone. Blink to Speak is available for free, and can be a temporary or permanent solution for patients to communicate with others.
The language is based upon eight key alphabets—eyes shut, blink, look left, look right, look up, look down, wink and eye roll. The guide lays out around 60 phrases made up of these alphabets which function similar to sign language. For example, furious winking means “Emergency,” while four blinks means “I want to go to sleep.” There is also an entire alphabet (A-Z) laid out in the guide.