Smart homes: pioneering age-friendly environments in China for enhanced health and quality of life

Ingy Shafei, Jyoti Khadka, Madhan Balasubramanian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Traditionally, China has been more reliant on a model of care that ensures older adults are cared for by family members. Whilst promoting the idea of older adults ageing in their own homes is essential, the provision of in-home care must shift from primarily relying on family caregivers to a model that places greater emphasis on gerontechnologies and enhanced healthcare service delivery. In this perspective article we argue for the adoption of a ‘smart home’ model in aged care in China. The smart home model argues for innovative technologies to older adult care, such as virtual support groups, video-conferencing, and electronic health records; assistive technologies that can safely maintain independence and assist with daily living such as sensors, wearables, telehealth, smart home technologies as well as interactive robotic technologies for mobility and cognitive support such as humanoid robots, rehabilitation robots, service/companion robots. The adoption and implementation of gerontechnologies have been slow, with only a handful of solutions demonstrating proven effectiveness in supporting home care. The utilisation of such digital technologies to support and enable older adults in China to age-in-place can bring a significant contribution to healthy ageing. Nonetheless, it’s crucial to focus on co-creating with end-users, incorporating their values and preferences, and enhancing training to boost the adoption of these gerontechnologies. Through a smart home model of care, China can age-in-place more effectively, leading to significant contributions to healthy ageing.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1346963
JournalFrontiers in Public Health
Volume12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 2024

Keywords

  • ageing
  • China
  • gerontechnologies
  • home care
  • models of care
  • older adults
  • smart home

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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