NEWS RELEASE

At an event in central Glasgow today (Friday 23rd August), Scottish Care, with the support of the Clydesdale Bank, is hosting only the second dedicated event to be held in Scotland on technology and its use in older people’s care and support.

Care Tech 2 is being held in the Strathclyde University Technology and Innovation Centre.

Technology has an increasingly important role to play in all our lives. In social care, technology is being used to enable individuals to maintain their independence for as long as possible, to support staff more effectively in their work, and to ensure that individuals remain in control of their supports for as long as possible.

This unique event brings together over 150 people including designers and developers alongside those using and working in social care services. Through a set of interactive workshops participants will hear about cutting edge innovation, contribute their own ideas and have an opportunity to consider what technology might mean for them in their home or workplace. The event will explore some of the most creative technologies now available and some which are currently under development.

The event also sees the launch a new Human Rights Charter for Technology and Digital in Social Care. The Charter has been developed with a range of designers, providers and people who work and use social care services over the last year. It grew out of the report ‘Tech Rights’, which Scottish Care launched last year, and which addresses some of the challenges which the increased use of technology including ‘care-bots’, and ‘sensor devices’ are now posing for developers and older people.

The Charter for Technology presents a number of statements which seek to place the development and use of technology and digital within a human rights and ethical perspective. It is the first of its kind to be developed anywhere and Scottish Care hopes it will continue and contribute to the wider debate on critical issues such as privacy, individual choice and control, and the importance of human contact.

Dr Donald Macaskill, Scottish Care CEO, said:

“Care Tech 2 is an attempt to recognise that we live in a dynamic and fast changing world where technology has the potential to do so much which is good for the care of our older citizens. But the day will also reflect on some of the dangers and limitations of technology, and how we need to develop a human rights and ethical framework for the use of this amazing technology. We are delighted to be able to launch the new human rights Charter for Technology and Digital in Social Care. We hope that over the next few weeks and months designers and developers, policy makers and politicians, providers and frontline workers as well as those who use social care supports, will sign up to the Charter. The future of care in Scotland has to be one which is based on the rights, dignity, privacy and control of individual citizens. The Charter is a positive contribution to achieving the rights-based care and support our citizens deserve.”

“Scotland has been a proud defender and promotor of human rights within social care and health. I believe there is a real opportunity, faced with the challenges of Artificial Intelligence and wider technology, for Scotland to be at the forefront of the debate around the role of ethics and human rights of technology.”

Derek Breingan, National Head of Health & Social Care Sector, Clydesdale Bank said:

" We are pleased again to sponsor this event following its previous success.  Whilst technology advances continue, and there is more evidence of this in care settings, the conference also explores some of the very important and interesting elements of its use.  Thought provoking debate has been generated on the Human Rights aspects of technology in person centred care following the inaugural event last year.  At Clydesdale Bank we understand the importance of investing in the sector and of the potential benefits that technology can provide and so are looking forward to an interesting, informative and beneficial event.”