The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. Or maybe the brain lacks discipline but the body is strong? In both cases, ICT innovations can assist people to make better choices, to instigate behavioral changes, to stay healthier, to better match hospital health care with patient demands, or to live at home for a longer period of time. For example, a product giving cues to help Parkinson’s patients to walk more easily could be a potential research area. Another example is directly connect with your physician from home with video conferencing, and monitor vital health signs from home like heart rate and blood pressure.
The growing demand for care, forecasted staff shortages and resource issues all call for innovative future solutions. On top of that, people today have developed other expectations about their care and well-being. They prefer to participate actively in society, live in environments of their own choosing, and maintain control over their own lives. This trend requires, among other things, the integration of highly specialized care with localized care.
The task of supporting integration in the chain of care provision requires innovative solutions. Such solutions can only succeed if connections are made with internal parties involved in care provision, as well as relevant external parties outside the care sector.
This will result in a new balance between professional care and supported care. A shift from intramural care to extramural care or even self-care requires more intensive communication, and hence a crucial role for new concepts in care and ICT. The home becomes a self-care and self-coaching environment. In this vision, person-centric healthcare solutions are essential for patients with chronic conditions – especially elderly people – as well as their informal caregivers. This emphasizes the role of the home as care environment, by providing real-time support to patients in order to monitor, self-manage and improve their physical condition according to their specific situation.
How can the required information be obtained from the variety of sources? Similarly, how can these data be put to good use? There are still many questions concerning the use of these data sources. Which legal, social and ethical issues are at stake? What types of data are useful and how can they be gathered efficiently? What types of analysis and tools are required to translate the data into relevant information to ultimately decrease costs, and to improve productivity and quality of care?
A selection i3B research projects are:
- SWELL: Smart Reasoning Systems for Wellbeing at Work and at Home
- Empathic Products
Possible results of research in this application domain may be:
- A system to assess health and wellbeing of farm animals
- A coaching app, recognizing activities and providing advice on exercising, taking a break, or a good night’s sleep
- An app to analyze sentiments and detect emotions on Twitter
- Health Valley www.health-valley.nl
- Medical Delta www.medicaldelta.nl
- Holland Health (www.health-holland.com)
- Public Health (http://ec.europa.eu/health/programme/policy/index_en.htm)
Are you searching for an integrated ICT solution to tackle your brain, body or behavior challenge, don’t hesitate to contact us for an information meeting – free of charge, of course!