Artificial Intelligence and even the use of robots?

At the county council we’ve always prided ourselves on looking for better, more effective ways of doing things, using new technologies and finding innovative solutions to problems.

Well, in our Public Health annual report published this week, we’re calling for a debate on the increasing use of technology to help support our ageing population.

I have blogged about this before, but between now and 2029 the number of over-65s in Staffordshire is expected to increase by almost a fifth. And while the county’s average life expectancy is 80 years for men and 83 for women, it’s calculated that on average ill-health begins at the age of 63 and 64 respectively. 

We know that traditional health and care services are not adequately ready to cope with this increasing number of people with multiple long-term conditions, but if we can use technology where appropriate, it could not only help people themselves but could reduce pressures on and benefit the health system at the same time.

I’m sure you’ll agree, technology such as smart phones have already totally transformed our lives.  A decade ago it was unthinkable that banks would be disappearing from the High Street, but some of us now manage our account on our phones, even paying for things with a simple tap.

Artificial Intelligence, remote consultations, smart speakers and even the use of robots are now all technological developments which could be used alongside traditional support. And, they’re not that far away from being deployed in easy reach.

Digital technologies really could offer an opportunity to do things differently, enabling people to take more control of their lives including their health and wellbeing.

It’s an interesting report and you can read the full Director of Public Health Annual Report 2019 here.

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