Innovative and Assistive eHealth Technologies for Smart Therapeutic and Rehabilitation Outdoor Spaces for the Elderly Demographic
journal contributionposted on 08.02.2021, 16:47 by Bruno Marques, Jacqueline McIntosh, Alvin Valera, Anuroop Gaddam
The use of technology for social connectivity and achieving engagement goals is increasingly essential to the overall well-being of our rapidly ageing population. While much of the extant literature has focused on home automation and indoor remote health monitoring; there is a growing literature that finds personal health and overall well-being improves when physical activities are conducted outdoors. This study presents a review of possible innovative and assistive eHealth technologies suitable for smart therapeutic and rehabilitation outdoor spaces for older persons. The article also presents key performance metrics required of eHealth technologies to ensure robust, timely and reliable biometric data transfer between patients in a therapeutic landscape environment and respective medical centres. A literature review of relevant publications with a primary focus of integrating sensors and eHealth technologies in outdoor spaces to collect and transfer data from the elderly demographic who engage such built landscapes to appropriate stakeholders was conducted. A content analysis was carried out to synthesize outcomes of the literature review. The study finds that research in assistive eHealth technologies and interfaces for outdoor therapeutic spaces is in its nascent stages and has limited generalisability. The level of technology uptake and readiness for smart outdoor spaces is still developing and is currently being outpaced by the growth of elderly fitness zones in public spaces. Further research is needed to explore those eHealth technologies with interactive feedback mechanisms that are suitable for outdoor therapeutic environments.