The purpose of this paper is to place the future development of technology within the existing reality of the diversity of care homes.
Using the findings from a learning exercise, the paper illustrates “diversity” in terms of the meaning staff, relatives, and residents attach to the words “care home”. This tri-partite approach provides a basis for exploring types of technology that could, if appropriately introduced, prove to be of benefit to the different users and staff.
Technology is more likely to be “fit for purpose” when it has been developed jointly with those who work, live in, and who visit care homes. Costs and benefits will be issues to be taken into account.
A lack of research evidence on the role of technology in care homes was a key limitation. In future, research should adopt a co-production approach to technology development.
The authors take a pragmatic stance that if due care is taken in preparations for and the introduction of technology, this would increase uptake of technology to meet different needs.
The paper makes the points that: older people can learn new technological skills; the concept of care homes as user-led is in accord with increased opportunity to engage residents in new technology. Technology in care homes while posing challenges also could prove to be a major lucrative market.
By triangulating the perspectives of residents, relatives, and staff the authors hope to have presented a realistic and evidence-based overview of the potential for technology advancement in care homes.
Wild, D., Szczepura, A., Bowman, C., Kydd, A. and Wallis, R. (2014), "Differing perspectives on a role for technology in care homes to improve the lives of older people and the work environment of staff", Housing, Care and Support, Vol. 17 No. 2, pp. 84-94. https://doi.org/10.1108/HCS-10-2013-0019Download as .RIS
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