Wearable technology supported home rehabilitation services in rural areas: emphasis on monitoring structures and activities of functional capacity. Handbook

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Alamäki, Antti
Nevala, Elina
Barton, John
Condell, Joan
Munoz Esquivel. Karla
Nordström, Anna
Tedesco, Salvatore
Kelly, Daniel
Heaney. David
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Publications of Karelia University of Applied Sciences B
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The sustainability of modern healthcare systems is under threat. – the ageing of the population, the prevalence of chronic disease and a need to focus on wellness and preventative health management, in parallel with the treatment of disease, pose significant social and economic challenges. The current economic situation has made these issues more acute. Across Europe, healthcare expenditure is expected to rice to almost 16% of GDP by 2020. (OECD Health Statistics 2018). Coupled with a shortage of qualified personnel, European nations are facing increasing challenges in their ability to provide better-integrated and sustainable health and social services. The focus is currently shifting from treatment in a care center to prevention and health promotion outside the care institute. Improvements in technology offers one solution to innovate health care and meet demand at a low cost. New technology has the potential to decrease the need for hospitals and health stations (Lankila et al., 2016. In the future the use of new technologies – including health technologies, sensor technologies, digital media, mobile technology etc. - and digital services will dramatically increase interaction between healthcare personnel and customers (Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, 2015a; Deloitte Center for Health Solutions 2015b). Introduction of technology is expected to drive a change in healthcare delivery models and the relationship between patients and healthcare providers. Applications of wearable sensors are the most promising technology to aid health and social care providers deliver safe, more efficient and cost-effective care as well as improving people’s ability to self-manage their health and wellbeing, alert healthcare professionals to changes in their condition and support adherence to prescribed interventions. (Tedesco et al., 2017; Majumder et al., 2017). While it is true that wearable technology can change how healthcare is monitored and delivered, it is necessary to consider a few things when working towards the successful implementation of this new shift in health care. It raises challenges for the healthcare systems in how to implement these new technologies, and how the growing amount of information in clinical practice, integrates into the clinical workflows of healthcare providers. Future challenges for healthcare include how to use the developing technology in a way that will bring added value to healthcare professionals, healthcare organizations and patients without increasing the workload and cost of the healthcare services. For wearable technology developers, the challenge will be to develop solutions that can be easily integrated and used by healthcare professionals considering the existing constraints. This handbook summarizes key findings from clinical and laboratory-controlled demonstrator trials regarding wearables to assist rehabilitation professionals, who are planning the use of wearable sensors in rehabilitation processes. The handbook can also be used by those developing wearable sensor systems for clinical work and especially for use in hometype environments with specific emphasis on elderly patients, who are our major health care consumers.
Wearable technology , Hometype , Rehabilitation , Elderly , Healthcare , Sensors
Alamäki, A., Nevala, E., Barton, J., Condell, J., Munoz Esquivel, K., Nordström, A.,Tedesco, S., Kelly, D. and Heaney, D. (2019). Wearable Technology Supported Home Rehabilitation Services in Rural Areas: – Emphasis on Monitoring Structures and Activities of Functional Capacity Handbook. (Handbooks and Article collections). Joensuu, Finland. isbn: 978-952-275-283-3
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