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APPs for carers
Date du début: 1 oct. 2016, Date de fin: 30 sept. 2018 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

Recent advances in clinical research and technological innovation for healthcare have opened new horizons in care provision and support of vulnerable groups, in areas such as the management of chronic diseases and ambient assisted living. Relevant solutions are offered both through care service providers, but also at the homes of older, patients and vulnerable individuals. The delivery of these solutions is supported by informal carers, which are an inherent and indispensable component of current health and social care provision all across Europe. Caring can be very rewarding, but also very demanding and cause of social isolation, physical and psychological exhaustion, difficulties in reconciliation of work and care responsibilities. Support services based on information and communication technologies (ICTs) can do a lot to support informal carers in performing their caring role, as recent evidence prove. Nowadays, there is a wide range of applications already available on the market that can be extremely useful for carers at any time and in any context, for example: to support scheduling and sharing of caring tasks and information; to have access to useful information, including micro-training opportunities; to remember tasks and deadlines; to involve the care recipient in simple recreational or even rehabilitation activities (for example for persons with cognitive impairments); to communicate remotely with other family members and professionals involved in the caring activities; to access services useful to save time and support reconciliation, such as on-line payments; to book medical appointments etc. On the other hand most of the time carers are not aware of them, or they do not know how to install or use them from their mobile devices, or they have not realized the potential benefits they could get out of their use. Our project intends to contribute to the wellbeing of informal carers by overcoming barriers which limit them and their care recipients from benefiting fully by learning, information and social participation opportunities offered via ICTs and especially mobile devices. The specific objectives of the project are: (1) to select (among those already available on the market for free or at very low cost) a number of applications and web-sites with mobile versions with functionalities useful for informal carers; (2) to develop training contents and methodologies to teach informal carers how to use and choose them to support their caring role; ultimately, (3) to provide informal carers with ICT skills for the use of mobile devices that will allow them to further select and use applications useful for their everyday life; (4) generate a mobile application which will serve as compact, usable and informative library of APPs dedicated for carers. During the project at least 50 informal carers will be involved in pilot testing of the training methodology and of the apps themselves. We expect these participants to have an immediate benefit in terms of social inclusion, both thanks to the participation to the training activities and exchange with other carers in a class-room setting and thanks to their increased digital-skills that will allow them to benefit of the social networking opportunities offered by the Internet mobile. In the short / medium term we also expect improvements in their perception of care burden, thanks to a better organized and trained care activity. At least 150 stakeholders and multipliers organizations will be involved in dissemination and exploitation activities will raise their awareness concerning the use of ICT as a mean to support informal carers. In the medium term we expect these organizations to adopt and exploit the training material developed in the project with their users / associates.



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