• Paper

    Naonori Kodate, Visiting Researcher
    Hiroo Ide, Project Associate Professor

A research paper from Visiting Researcher Kodate and Assoc. Prof. Ide’s group published at “Health & Social Care in the Community”


Many countries face major challenges to ensure that their health and social care systems are ready for the growing numbers of older people (OP). As a way of realising ageing in place, assistive technologies such as home-care robots are expected to play a greater role in the future. In Asia and Europe, robots are gradually being adopted as a public policy solution to the workforce shortage. Yet, there is still a strongly held belief that such technologies should not be part of human and personal care services such as OP’s care. However, there has been little research into attitudes and perceptions of potential users regarding home-care robots which can provide companionship and support with activities of daily living. To explore these in more detail, a questionnaire study was carried out in Finland, Ireland and Japan.

This study reports findings from the Irish cohort (114 older people [OP], 8 family carers and 56 Health and Social Care Professionals [HSCPs]). Seventy per cent of the total respondents (N = 178) reported being open to the use of home-care robots, and only one quarter had a negative image of robots. People with care responsibilities in their private capacity expressed more interest in, and readiness to use, home-care robots, while stressing the importance of ‘privacy protection’ and ‘guaranteed access to human care’. Both OP and HSCPs identified observation and recording of OP’s mental and physical condition as desirable functions of such robots, whereas practical functions such as fall prevention and mobility support were also deemed desirable by HSCPs. There is generally positive interest in home-care robots among Irish respondents. Findings strongly suggest that the interest is generated partly by great need among people who deliver care. Should such robots be developed, then careful consideration must be given to user-centred design, ethical aspects and national care policy.

Research title:

Home-care robots – Attitudes and perceptions among older people, carers and care professionals in Ireland: A questionnaire study.

Joint Researchers:

Kodate N, Donnelly S, Suwa S, Tsujimura M, Kitinoja H, Hallila J, Toivonen M, Ide H, Yu W.


Health & Social Care in the Community.
DOI 10.1111/hsc.13327


Hiroo Ide
Project Associate Professor, Institute for Future Initiatives