If in the future man will fully rely on smart systems to provide care, how do we make sure people will be feeling comfortable with this? Or will these systems be so smart that we will no longer notice they are systems, not human? What will all these new technological possibilities mean for mental healthcare? Treatment may become much more effective, the side effects of antipsychotic medication a thing of the past. New technology may also save us a lot of money. If technology can help us to visualise mental afflictions, this may remove the stigma from people actually suffering from mental illness.
These developments do, however, raise the question who will benefit the most from future healthcare. The people who need it the most, or the ones who will be able to afford it? Will cultural backgrounds still play a role in shaping tomorrow’s healthcare? The visions of the future presented in this book are not forecasts. They are just images describing what may happen, without timetable.
This could all happen in 2025, 2050 or maybe never. These images only aim to raise questions. What do we expect? What do we want? And first and foremost: what do we have to do right now to create the desired future situations, and to avoid the undesired ones, while taking into account the quality of life, the cost, education, labour conditions and all other aspects?
Sketching these of the future requires us to look at the technological developments of the past and present as well as future developments. These include developments in healthcare such as the miniaturisation of medical equipment, and external trends. If we have learned one thing from the past it is that important developments in healthcare do not always originate from the sector itself. In the end it is all simply a matter of getting down to work, and scanning the future of the own (care) environment or implementing a concrete improvement in healthcare. Technology and (health)care, a happy couple indeed!
Beter?! Toekomstbeelden van technology in de zorg (only in Dutch, English summary)
Author: Ellen Willemse, 2015
ISBN: 978 94 913 97 110
Price hardcopy (only available in Dutch): € 17,50 (excluding shipping)
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