ISSUE Over the past few years we had the privilege to observe telecare and ambient assisted living beginning to turn from a good idea into something that can be used by older people, professional and family carers, and that – hopefully – will impact their life in a positive way. Although we are still far from seeing the end or only the high point of that development it seems a good time today to sit back, to take stock of what has been done and learned so far and to consider the way ahead. By bringing together theorists and practitioners and by drawing upon their experiences from research projects, implementation programmes and mar- ket studies, this symposion aims to further the discussion of key challenges posed by the development, implementation and deployment of IT-supported processes for care delivery to older people. CONTENT The symposium will look, in some detail, at three key challenges encountered on the way from tele- care concepts to market-ready applications and services: (i) Meeting the de- mands of intermediary and end users, (ii) Evolutionising rather than revolutionis- ing care processes, and (iii) Developing business models and plans for difficult and differing market environments. These challenges will be discussed against the background of practical experiences made in three European RTD and dep- loyment projects, SOPRANO, NETCARITY and CommonWell. Furthermore, find- ings of a recent study on telecare and telehealth markets in Europe, the US and Japan will be presented. To broaden the scope in the following discussion, short statements from further researchers on issues ranging from evaluation, to the telecare market in Canada will be included.STRUCTURE The symposium will start with an introduction to the issue followed by three presentations giving prac- tical examples of approaches and challenges for telecare development, imple- mentation and deployment. The larger part of the time will be given to a mod- erated discussion among presenters and audience aiming to identify further chal- lenges, to find solutions for existing ones and in general draw upon the expertise of those present to describe a way from research to practice. Further presenters will give short statements on selected issues to keep the discussion going. CONCLUSIONS The key outcome will be a better understanding of challenges met in the implementation and deployment of telecare solutions among those who are present. The symposium will also aim to start a sustainable exchange of experience across the Atlantic and towards Asia. A summary report will be created and distributed among the symposiants and other stakeholders in the EU, Canada and elsewhere.
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