Designing health technology: the ethical dimension

CRAIG, Claire and CHAMBERLAIN, Paul (2017). Designing health technology: the ethical dimension. In: DASTBAZ, Mohammad, ARABNIA, Hamid and AKHGAR, Babak, (eds.) Technology for smart futures. London, Springer, 289-301.

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Global demographics and the rising number of people living with long-term conditions have placed increasing pressure on existing health-care delivery. Technological innovation in the form of telehealth and telecare has been posited as one possible solution, offering individuals with chronic conditions a set of tools to monitor and better manage their health, reducing pressure on existing services and making possible cost savings through fewer admissions to hospital (Whole Systems Demonstrator Action Network, 2010). These advances are challenging and reshaping existing models of care, revolutionizing how and where health-care is provided However whilst these technologies offer great potential they also raise important ethical questions. Some of these relate to the application of technologies: for instance the use of tracking and surveillance (particularly in the context of people living with dementia). Other questions these advances raise relate to issues regarding access and accessibility to the technology, particularly for older people and individuals from communities with low socio-economic status. This chapter explores some of these ethical challenges. It begins by considering the broader context in which these health technologies have emerged before identifying the ethical principles that underpin current health and social care provision; most notably autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence and justice. Drawing on research undertaken by the authors the chapter then considers how technology can potentially contravene these principles and the complexity and ethical dilemmas developers, designers and providers of such health technologies can face. Finally it reflects on ways of navigating these tensions.

Item Type: Book Section
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Cultural Communication and Computing Research Institute > Art and Design Research Centre
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Page Range: 289-301
Depositing User: Claire Craig
Date Deposited: 24 Jul 2017 14:04
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 17:00

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