Dr Hannah R. Marston, a Research Fellow in the Faculty of WELS, has provided evidence in a recently published report on the need for more life-enhancing technologies for disabled and older people.
The report outlines tangible actions that government and industry can take to support independent living to improve the quality of life of disabled and older people and their families, while also reducing financial pressures on the NHS and the social care system. Its key recommendation is for the government to create an Independent Living Technology Grant to boost access to life-enhancing technologies.
Dr Marston, Research Fellow in the Health and Wellbeing Strategic Research Area, a pan-OU initiative, provided a best practice case study based on the ‘Adapt Tech, Accessible Technology’ project, in addition to case studies on age-friendly technologies for the The Smarter Homes for Independent Living: Putting People in Control of Their Lives report published by Policy Connect, a cross-party think tank.
Dr Marston, who is part of the the Smart Homes and Independent Living Commission, said:
“My research findings show that older adults and disabled people continue to be affected and marginalised due to lack of access to the digital world and innovative frameworks within the domain of Age-friendly Cities and Communities can inspire and assist researchers, policy makers and industry to strive to be more “age-friendly.”
Report author Clive Gilbert, Policy Connect said:
“Our recommendations will help millions of disabled and older people lead more fulfilling lives by putting their needs and aspirations at the centre of technology design and care services. With appropriate support from carers, family members and friends, smart home technology promises to give people more choice and control in their lives. To achieve this, we must reform the way technology is used in health and social care services. The technology market must also be made to work better for disabled and older consumers.”
Research papers input by Dr Marston are: