Policy Press

Social alarms to telecare

Older people's services in transition

By Malcolm J Fisk


Jun 25, 2003

Page count

304 pages




234 x 156 mm


Policy Press
Social alarms to telecare

Healthcare, social welfare and housing policy agendas, while emphasising the importance of supporting the independent living of older people at home, have generally failed to take account of the actual or potential role played by social alarms and telecare.

This book draws on research and practice throughout the developed world. It documents the emergence of these important technologies and considers their potential in the contexts of healthcare, social welfare and housing.

The book is of immense importance to policy makers and practitioners in healthcare, social welfare and housing. It signals the potential, the challenges and the threats associated with such technologies. As such it must be compulsory reading for every current or potential service provider.

"... an invaluable reference work for anyone interested in the field of social alarms, new technologies and how telecare goes beyond support and monitoring to the empowerment of vulnerable older people. It should, as the cover note promotes, "be compulsory reading for every current or potential service provider." Community Care

" ... will certainly appeal to practitioners and policymakers thanks to the book's concise and accessible style devoid of jargon. Scholars will also appreciate the historical and descriptive chapters that are relevant for teaching and research purposes, providing clear examples of the need to integrate technological developments within social and housing policies." Canadian Journal on Aging

"... highly recommended. Fisk offers both an understanding of the historical perspective, a summary of current practice together with thoughts as to potential future developments. For Telecare professionals, both current and potential, this is a must-read volume." The Link, ASAP

"... a mine of useful information and will stimulate comment and theoretical discussion." Ageing & Society

"This comprehensive yet easy-to-read book provides an excellent introduction to an otherwise neglected area of health care." RCN Information in Nursing Forum

"The author creates a world view of systems and services and considers social, technological, and political perspectives under varying governance." Journal of Gerontological Social Work.

"... an original and long awaited contribution. This book offers an understanding both of the historical perspective and of current evidence relating to this somewhat neglected area, pulling together much information for the first time." Lyn Thompson, Centre for Sheltered Housing Studies

"This book provides a valuable and critical assessment of the development of telecare and smart home services in the UK and internationally. I recommend it to practitioners working in housing, primary care and social alarm provider organisations, social policy academics and policy makers." Kevin Doughty, Technology in Healthcare

Malcolm J. Fisk is a social scientist with expertise on the support needs of older people. He has worked in senior positions within UK housing and social services authorities, the electronics industry and at Liverpool John Moores University and the University of Wales. Currently he is Managing Director of Insight Social Research Ltd.

Contents: Introduction: what are social alarms?; Social theory and social alarms; A critical review of the literature; The origins of social alarms; Social alarms in England and Wales; Social alarms in Scotland; Social alarms in Ireland; Social alarms (PRS) in North America; Social alarms in the rest of the world; Social alarms: international comparisons; Social alarms and smart homes; Social alarms, telemedicine and telecare; Falls, lifestyle monitoring and dementia care; Conclusions.

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