An ageing population will include increasing numbers of people who have mobility problems, and many who will be unable to perform personal care tasks such as toileting. Support for these groups is likely to be provided by a combination of human carers and electromechanical telecare devices. Many of the technologies that will be needed are already available, and the challenge may be to make them aesthetically appealing to the users. This paper describes some of the current approaches and the likely emergence of robotic devices or personal electronic appliances that will offer people an alternative means of support when they feel that they are unable to perform tasks for themselves. The devices may provide telecare monitoring so that people are only able to accept the electromechanical support when it is actually needed.
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