Encouraging Innovation for Assistive Health Technologies in Dementia: Barriers, Enablers and Next Steps to Be Taken

Kieren J. Egan, Anne Margriet Pot*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


Introduction: Innovative Assistive Health Technology (AHT) has the potential to improve the quality of life for people with dementia or their families. Although development is in its preliminary stages, research shows first promising results. Despite such progress, we are still to observe widespread integration of technology into communities. If society is to benefit from innovative AHT to assist people with dementia and their caregivers, we must deepen our understanding of the needs, barriers, and enablers of innovative AHT. Methods: In March 2015, multinational focus groups were undertaken to identify the barriers, enablers, stakeholder actions, and a future perspective for the use of AHT in dementia. This exploratory study was carried out in preparation of the first World Health Organization Ministerial Conference on the Global Action against Dementia. Results: The focus group study identified that innovative AHT for people with dementia and caregivers is at an early stage of development; however, there is substantial promise across a range of different care needs. Focus group discussions identified internationally relevant barriers and enablers for the development of innovative AHT centring on an improved understanding for needs in dementia. Conclusion: There are many diverse barriers to the development of innovative AHT but none that appear insurmountable regarding the enablers that were mentioned. There is now an overriding imperative for a systematic, coordinated multistakeholder approach with the needs of people with dementia and their caregivers as the centerpiece.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)357-363
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Medical Directors Association
Issue number4
Early online date23 Mar 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016.


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