A PIONEERING project to help the elderly keep their independence in their last years of life is being piloted in the North East.
Newcastle University is to work with specialist charities including Marie Curie Cancer Care on the SiDE project, which is the UK’s largest research programme of its kind.
The study will explore how new digital technologies can be used to address social exclusion of the elderly and to support end-of-life experiences.
The project comes after evidence from Government research revealed that 60% of people die in hospital even though 70% would prefer to die in their own home.
SiDe, which stands for Social Inclusion in the Digital Economy, is based at Newcastle University and also involves researchers from Dundee University.
SiDE director Paul Watson, who is a professor of computer science at Newcastle, said: “Developing technologies to assist the elderly is a key part of our work.
“It is very important that in doing so we work closely with care organisations and their clients in order to understand the real needs of individuals.”