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The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine
Board on Human System Integration
Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education

Health Care Comes Home

The Human Factors


Home Health Care Cover





Consensus Report


Consensus Report Brief


Workshop Summary Report


Workshop Summary Highlights


In the United States, health care and associated medical devices and information technologies are rapidly moving into the home. This transition, which is likely to accelerate in the future, has raised a host of issues. The safety, quality, and effectiveness of home health care can be informed by many issues encompassed by the field of human factors research and practicewhich studies human capabilities and limitations and their interaction with the design of products, processes, systems, and work environments.


The multidisciplinary Committee on the Role of Human Factors in Home Healthcare was formed to examine a diverse range of behavioral and human factors issues resulting from the increasing migration of medical devices, technologies, and care practices into the home. Its goal was to lay the groundwork for a thorough integration of human factors knowledge and research with the design and implementation of home health care devices, systems, technologies, and practices.


Through its work, the committee determined that human factors can help improve health care in the home in four primary areas: health care technologies, caregivers in the home, residential environments for health care, and research and development. Improvement in these areas holds the promise of providing healthy living, comfort, and effective treatment to care recipients while lessening the burden on caregivers. Federal leadership and improved data collection and analysis will be necessary to spur these improvements. There are also many additional opportunities for researchers and developers to study and use human factors to support positive change and maximize the promise of successful health care at home.  


August 17, 2011 Public Discussion Event Video Archive
On August 17, 2011 the Committee on the Role of Human Factors in Home Health Care brought together committee members and stakeholders in order to discuss the recently released report Health Care Comes Home: The Human Factors.


Click here for more information and to view video of the discussion, available in the BOHSI Meeting Archive.


Consumer Health Information Technology in the Home: A Guide for Human Factors Design Considerations


Designers Guide Cover




Consumer Guide


Every day, in households across the country, people engage in behavior to improve their current health, recover from disease and injury, or cope with chronic, debilitating conditions. Innovative computer and information systems may help these people manage health concerns, monitor important indicators of their health, and communicate with their formal and informal caregivers. Human factors is an engineering science dedicated to understanding and improving the way people use technology and other things in the environment.


In addition to the consensus report and workshop summary report, the Committee prepared Consumer Health Information Technology in the Home to introduce designers and developers to the practical realities and complexities of managing health at home. It provides guidance and human factors design considerations that will help designers and developers create consumer health IT applications that are useful resources to achieve better health.


































































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