First, Cause No Harm: Issues in Building Safe, Reliable and Trustworthy Elder Care Systems

Christopher A. Miller, Karen Haigh, and Wende Dewing

Emerging smart, adaptive, integrative reasoning and interaction management technologies---which we choose to call Interaction Design Systems---hold enormous promise to solve a growing international problem: the provision of care for elderly populations. There are, however, substantial novel challenges to providing care with this type of technology to this population. Specific challenges arise from providing safe, reliable and affordable systems for a highly diverse population that is not in a position to oversee or compensate for technology’s failings. These pressures should drive us toward specific IDS architectures designed for growth, expansion and tuning---both for the individual installation and over the lifespan of the technology. Furthermore, they should also, generally drive us toward initial delivery of systems that provide minimal automation capabilities, augmenting the supervisory role of human caregivers, rather than trying to replace them. Most importantly, any such system going into final use should strive to provide an accurate depiction of its capabilities and limitatons to both carogiver and elder.


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