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ICT transforming delivery of health care to empower people

21 December, 2007

Advances in ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) for personal health care are playing a critical role in improving people's health and wellbeing.

"Health care systems in OECD countries face tremendous pressure due to ageing societies, lifestyle related chronic illnesses and increasing health care costs," says Dr IIkka Korhonen, chief research scientist of ICT for Health at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and International Research Fellow at CSIRO’s e-Health Research Centre (EHRC).

"New technologies, such as personal health systems, home-based monitoring tools, and wearable and mobile technologies are reforming the delivery of health care and empowering individuals to take a more active role in managing their health."

EHRC's chief executive Gary Morgan says that through Dr Korhonen’s Fellowship, collaborative opportunities in ICT for health between VTT and CSIRO are being explored.

“Close collaboration with health care providers is essential for achieving better health care through ICT. The partnership between EHRC and Queensland Health has huge potential and we will undoubtedly see the fruits of this over the next few years,"

Dr Korhonen says.“The Care Assessment Platform (CAP) project being undertaken here at EHRC is an ideal candidate for collaboration with VTT,” Morgan says.

CAP’s objective is to develop ICT solutions for managing and preventing chronic diseases to reduce the burden on health care systems and improve the quality of service to patients.

"Close collaboration with health care providers is essential for achieving better health care through ICT. The partnership between EHRC and Queensland Health has huge potential and we will undoubtedly see the fruits of this over the next few years," Dr Korhonen says.

Dr Korhonen is EHRC’s third International Research Fellow. His research interests include the use of ICT for health and wellness, biosignal interpretation methods and pervasive health care technologies, especially their applications in critical care patient monitoring, personal health systems, ambient assisted living, and e-Health.

CSIRO's EHRC International Fellowships enable international and Australian-based researchers to be seconded from their organisations to undertake collaborative projects under the auspices of CSIRO's e-Health research program.

Established in 2003, the e-Health Research Centre is a leading national research facility in ICT for healthcare innovations. A joint venture between CSIRO and the Queensland Government, the e-Health Research Centre's Research Program aims to improve the quality and safety of healthcare for individuals and communities through an ICT research program focused on applied outcomes and active adoption by the health system.

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