This article by CATCH PhD student Sarah Abdi along with Professors Luc de Witte and Mark Hawley has been published in Geriatrics and is available online at MDPI, a publisher of open access scientific journals. This Delphi Study provided experts’ assessment of the potential of emerging technologies that could meet older people’s care and support needs.

Some emerging technologies have potential to address older people’s care and support needs.

However, there is still a gap in the knowledge on the potential uses of these technologies in some care domains. Therefore, a two-round Delphi survey was conducted to establish a consensus of opinion from a group of health and social technology experts (n = 21) on the potential of 10 emerging technologies to meet older people’s needs in five care and support domains. Experts were also asked to provide reasons for their choices in free-text spaces. The consensus level was set at 70%. Free-text responses were analyzed using thematic analysis. Voice activated devices was the technology that reached experts consensus in all assessed care domains. Some technologies (e.g., Artificial intelligence (AI) enabled apps and wearables and Internet of things (IoT) enabled homes) also show potential to support basic self-care and access to healthcare needs of older people.

However, most of the remaining technologies (e.g., robotics, exoskeletons, virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR)) face a range of technical and acceptability issues that may hinder their adoption by older people in the near future. Findings should encourage the R & D community to address some of the identified challenges to improve the adoption of emerging technologies by older people.

Please read the full article here.