Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Nurses Open To Idea Of Robots

August 14, 2009
Front-line staff in the nursing and care sector would welcome sensor and robot technology in nursing homes and the homes of elderly people.

Front-line staff in the nursing and care sector would welcome sensor and robot technology in nursing homes and the homes of elderly people.

The reason is that such a move would free up time that personnel could use for social contact with clients. They also believe that sensors and robots will enable elderly people to stay longer in their own homes.

These are some of the results of a study carried out by SINTEF for the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities. The background for the study is the “elderly boom” and the challenges that the nursing and care sector will face when fewer and fewer people of working age have to look after a rapidly growing population of old people.

Freeing up time

The survey found that staff regard cleaning, and moving and lifting patients as potential applications for “care and nursing robots”. They also concluded that the development and introduction of new technology should take place in such a way that the level of social support that they provide will be maintained, or preferably, be improved.

Several different categories of nursing and care personnel in Porsanger, Kongsberg and Trondheim were interviewed; of these, 29 individual staff members were interviewed in depth.

At first, many of the informants were sceptical to the idea of introducing robots into Norwegian homes and nursing homes. However, in the course of the interviews many of them began to mention situations in which they could imagine using a robot.

Help with dirty clothes

“It is worth noting that the staff still prefer themselves to perform tasks that currently require personal contact. However, they would like routine tasks such as dealing with dirty clothes to be handled by a robot,” says Kristine Holbø of SINTEF Technology and Society, who led the project.

Safety sensors

Where sensors are concerned, many care and nursing personnel are most concerned about monitoring the safety of old people. One home nursing respondent mentioned that if people who live at home need to have their health monitored by sensors, they ought to be in a nursing home!

As part of the project, SINTEF also carried out a survey of existing and potential technology that could be relevant to the needs mentioned by the interviewees.

However, project manager Kristine Holbø warns our politicians that they should not use the report as a signal to let a whole raft of technologies loose in the care and nursing sector.

“So far, we have only interviewed personnel. The next step will be to talk to all the user groups, map their wishes and needs, and start to test remedies on a small scale,” says Holbø.

Avoiding “technology push”

The project manager also emphasises that it is by no means certain that modern technology is the answer to all the problems of this sector, but that mechanical solutions and organisational changes may be the best in certain cases.

“We need to be sure that any devices that we introduce are functional, and have to avoid “pushing” technology onto the users,” says Holbø, who also points out that there already exist technologies that could have been used successfully, but which were stopped by bureaucratic barriers.

“For example, consider the situation of a dementia patient who walks out of the house in the middle of the night and wanders around the streets. This could easily be prevented by a simple door-mounted alarm that warns a monitoring centre, but the way things are today, such a person virtually must be declared mentally incompetent before this type of alarm can be installed. And while the mills of officialdom grind exceedingly slow, the patient may well  become so reduced that she or he has already been admitted to a nursing home by the time that the alarm can be installed.”

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by SINTEF. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Cite This Page:

SINTEF. "Nurses Open To Idea Of Robots." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 August 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090730140437.htm>.
SINTEF. (2009, August 14). Nurses Open To Idea Of Robots. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090730140437.htm
SINTEF. "Nurses Open To Idea Of Robots." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090730140437.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This

More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) — The World Health Organization has declared Nigeria free of Ebola. Health experts credit a bit of luck and the government's initial response. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Another Study Suggests Viagra Is Good For The Heart

Another Study Suggests Viagra Is Good For The Heart

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) — An ingredient in erectile-dysfunction medications such as Viagra could improve heart function. Perhaps not surprising, given Viagra's history. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 20, 2014) — Forty-three people who had contact with Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S., were cleared overnight of twice-daily monitoring after 21 days of showing no symptoms. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Fauci: Ebola Protocols to Focus on Training

Fauci: Ebola Protocols to Focus on Training

AP (Oct. 20, 2014) — Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says he expects revised CDC protocols on Ebola to focus on training, observation and ensuring health care workers are more protected. (Oct. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.


Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News


Free Subscriptions

Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile

Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?

Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins