Our population is getting older. The population of people over 60 years old has more than doubled in 2017, compared to 1980, and the number is expected to double again by 2050, according to the report by the United Nations. These are good news; we are healthier and living longer; however, those numbers are pushing the burdens on already distressed health care systems worldwide. Additionally, our lifestyle has shifted over the years, and we are currently living a more sedentary life, with our work and life habits. All those changes have resulted in an older population, suffering from many disabilities and chronic diseases and disorders. The severity of this problem has led the United Nations (UN) to identify “ensuring healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”, as one of its 2030 sustainability goals.
Senior citizens, in general, would prefer to live at the comfort of their own homes, with as much autonomy and independence as possible. This requires continuous close monitoring of their health conditions. Hiring home-care givers puts financial burdens on elderly, who are usually retired and living on limited budget. There is a clear need for innovations in the remote monitoring, specifically tailored for older population and considering each gender specificity, assuring the least invasion of their lives and privacy, and with the minimum dependence on the user, to guarantee their autonomous and independence.
Additionally, nowadays the world is facing a SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) global pandemic. The way that health care is delivered during this situation is shifting: reduced staff exposure, preserved Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and minimized the patient’s impact. Consequently, healthcare systems shall as well adjust the way they work using methods that do not rely on in-person services anymore.
Fortunately, this comes at a time, where advances in networking and electronics have been moving forward rapidly towards the provision of tools and vehicles to address such issues and problems. ALIVE workshop solicits research and implementation efforts dedicated to eHealth solutions, targeting older population and healthy living at all ages. The workshop intends to bring together researchers and players from both academia and industry, who are working towards solutions to enhance the life quality of all population at all ages, with special focus on solutions dedicated to elder population, catering to their special needs (e.g. addressing each gender specific necessities) and the requirement of non-invasive continuous monitoring, while offering them autonomy and complete freedom to live a complete fulfilling life.