The old normal: our future health

A pandemic, an ageing population and a rise in chronic conditions mean that our health and care systems in the UK are facing the biggest challenge of our lifetime.

People in the South West of England are used to be being isolated. The coastal and rural location of this peninsula, combined with a lack of investment in transport and infrastructure, means the overwhelmingly ageing population live in the conditions of a global pandemic lockdown daily.  

These communities have been the focus of research of the Centre for Health Technology and its researchers for over 30 years. Together, they work to enable innovative healthcare solutions that reduce the pressure on services, support healthy ageing in our communities and stimulate an economy of wellbeing that benefits all.

Researchers share their views on the current state of health and care in the UK, and what its future could look like.

The risks of robot companions in care homes

Hannah Bradwell, EPIC Research Associate in eHealth (Engagement & Impact Assessment Social Care)

Nothing is risk free and we are all learning to balance the risk of infection by SARS-CoV-2 with the associated risk to health and wellbeing from the ‘collateral’ of lockdowns and infection control measures. 

The older generation have been particularly at risk in this pandemic as evidenced by the terrible case fatality rates in many care homes. Care homes have had to take extreme measures including restrictions on visiting which has had a profound impact on residents, many of whom already suffer from loneliness, agitation and depression. What of technology in this?

 

Centre for Health Technology

Bringing together digital health and health technology expertise from across the University to drive the development, evaluation and implementation of innovative technologies, products, services and approaches to transform health and social care.

Find out more about the Centre for Health Technology