"An algorithm can help and facilitate care", but "we must not forget that care is relational". This is how the gerontologist and scientific director of the La Caixa Foundation's Elderly Program, Javier Yanguas, answered to the question of the talk 'Can an algorithm take care of us?' held on September 19 at the Palacio de Las Alhajas in Madrid. Yanguas recognized the potential of new technologies to improve the lives of the elderly, without ever replacing the human factor.
Also participating in the debate were Lydia Feito (professor of bioethics and member of the Spanish Bioethics Committee), Jaime del Barrio (physician and president of the Digital Health Association) and Ricardo Gabarró (R&D&I director of the EULEN Group). All of them were moderated by the journalist specialized in science and technology, Esther Paniagua.
During the talk, the importance of bearing in mind that technological solutions, especially artificial intelligence, must be developed based on real needs, for which it is advisable to encourage the cross-cutting participation of the elderly throughout the design and implementation process. It is also important to ensure that these technologies are friendly to the elderly, i.e. that they are usable, safe and practical. Ethical aspects must be considered, such as the rights of the elderly and the need to avoid stigmatization or discrimination based on age, taking into account the wide heterogeneity of the elderly population.
"In the end, what it comes down to is trying to determine who the end user is, what kind of risks there may be for that user, whether or not it is adapted to their needs and, of course, that it looks after their rights.".
Lydia Feito, professor of bioethics and member of the bioethics committee of Spain
This was the 6th Edition of #EnModoAvión, a series of talks organized by Cuatroochenta with the aim of promoting reflection and debate on the impact of new technologies on today's society. In this edition, the event counted with the collaboration of the Cuatroochenta Chair of Artificial Intelligence, Health and Welfare of the Universitat Jaume I and the EULEN Group.
Technology for the elderly: the Chair's research objective
The theme of the talk is a cross-cutting issue for all the projects of the Cuatroochenta Chair since it aims to adapt the different technological solutions proposed to the elderly, through participatory and inclusive designs. An example of this is Sally, the system to assess frailty designed by the Chair's team, which has already been tested in geriatric centres in the city of Castelló with the aim of obtaining feedback from the elderly themselves on different aspects such as its usability.
Precisely, the Chair recently presented this project at the IX International Congress on Digital Health that took place on September 15. In addition, the Chair's team will soon attend the V Conference on Aging of the Official College of Psychologists of the Valencian Community called "New realities in ageing" where, in addition to Sally, they will present Serena, another of their central projects, which consists of a conversational assistant to evaluate unwanted loneliness.