Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Consideration of Human Factors in e-Health Solutions


E-Health solutions are generally regarded as socio-technical systems since, in addition to its technological nature, many people interact with them during the provision of the service. Thus, the service must meet the expectations and needs of all the people involved, if it has to be of any practical use. Human factors directly affect the acceptance of the service by these people.

Although efforts have been made to identify and formalize the different areas that conform the human factors, these have not been yet adequately addressed from a formal point of view. Besides, human factors are by nature technically difficult to address. In many cases, their proper consideration requires a good understanding of not only people’s capabilities and limitations but also their personal, socioeconomic and cultural context. Even with this understanding, it is often difficult to translate it into the formal terms required by the information and communication technologies to be used inside SH. All this hinders research and innovation when developing new solutions.

To address this issue research initiatives are required which are aimed at creating design patterns and low-level guidelines to promote the integration of the human factors-related functional aspects. These would constitute a set of very useful resources for developers which, if properly characterized, could be easily particularized to each specific application, people and context.

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