Currently accepted at: JMIR Aging
Date Submitted: Sep 12, 2018
Open Peer Review Period: Sep 12, 2018 - Oct 24, 2018
Date Accepted: Mar 11, 2019
(closed for review but you can still tweet)
Factors influencing Smart Health Technologies adoption for People with Dementia and their Informal Caregivers: A Scoping Review and Design Framework.
Dementia is a neurodegenerative chronic condition characterized by a progressive decline in a person’s memory, thinking, learning skills and ability to perform activities of daily life. Currently, Dementia affects 47 million people worldwide and with numbers expecting to increase, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared it a public health priority in 2012. Smart Health Technologies (s-Health Technologies) are being developed to support People with Dementia (PwD) and their informal caregivers at home, to improve care and reduce the levels of burden and stress they can experience. However, while s-Health technologies have the potential to facilitate this, it is still unknown what are the factors influencing a successful implementation in this population.
The aim of this research was to review existing literature to explore the factors influencing PwD and their informal caregivers’ adoption of s-Health technologies for home care.
Following Arksey and O’Malley methodology, the present study is a scoping review that provides a narrative description of the scientific literature on factors influencing s-Health technology adoption for PwD and their informal caregivers. A search was conducted in Pubmed, Cochrane library, IEEE library, and Scopus. Publications screening was conducted by two researchers based on inclusion criteria and full-text analysis was then conducted by one researcher. The included articles were thematically analyzed by two researchers, to gain an insight into factors influencing adoption that PwD and their informal caregivers have to encounter when using s-Health Technologies. Relevant information was identified and coded. Codes were later discussed between the researchers for developing and modifying them, achieving a consensus and organized the codes into broader themes.
Emerging themes were built in a way that said something specific and meaningful about the research question, creating a list of emerging themes for factors influencing s-Health Technologies adoption for PwD and their informal caregivers including: attitudinal aspects (positive and negative attitudes towards technology), ethical issues, technology-related challenges, condition-related challenges and identified gaps. Finally, a list of design considerations was created based on our findings, as a guide for future research and innovation in the area of s-Health Technologies for PwD and their informal caregivers, resulting in our proposed design framework: ‘DemDesCon for s-Heatlh Technologies’. DemDesCon for s-Health Technologies addresses four domains to consider for design and developing for this population: cognitive decline domain, physical decline domain, social domain and development domain.
Even though s-Health technologies have been used in healthcare scenarios, more work is needed for them to fully achieve their potential for use in Dementia care. Researchers, businesses and public governments need to collaborate to design and implement effective technology solutions for PwD and their informal caregivers, but the lack of clear design guidelines seems to be slowing the process. We believe that DemDesCon framework will provide them with the guidance and assistance for creating meaningful devices for home care for PwD and informal caregivers, filling a much needed space in the gap of knowledge.
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