The acceptability of assistive technology to older people


Assistive technology (AT) is defined in this paper as ‘any device or system that allows

an individual to perform a task that they would otherwise be unable to do, or

increases the ease and safety with which the task can be performed’ (Cowan

and Turner-Smith 1999). Its importance in contributing to older people’s independence

and autonomy is increasingly recognised, but there has been little research

into the viability of extensive installations of AT. This paper focuses on

the acceptability of AT to older people, and reports one component of a multidisciplinary

research project that examined the feasibility, acceptability, costs and

outcomes of introducing AT into their homes. Sixty-seven people aged 70 or

more years were interviewed in-depth during 2001 to find out about their use and

experience of a wide range of assistive technologies. The findings suggest a

complex model of acceptability, in which a ‘ felt need’ for assistance combines

with ‘product quality’. The paper concludes by considering the tensions that may

arise in the delivery of acceptable assistive technology.

Uploaded by Ash-Lee Hall
Uploaded on 2015-09-01 07:36:49

· Domestic Assistance
· Smart Homes & Environmental Controls

· Assistive Technology
· Older People
· Acceptability
· Home
· Housing
· Assisted Living Technology