P5 eHealth: An agenda for the health technologies of the future
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The idea of this book emerged within the discussion of the implementation and resources of a Europe-funded project (IManage), especially regarding the utilization of an eHealth platform. eHealth is regarded as a fundamental resource for care nowadays, to the point that a growing number of scientific publications involve some form of web-based and/or immersive technologies devoted to improve patient adherence to treatment and healthy activities, patient education, and even the monitoring of mental health outcomes such as stress, emotions, as well as biases potentially affecting health-related decision-making. However, by analyzing the literature on these topics, we realized that eHealth evolution still tends mostly to the implementation and exploitation of technological advancement, but the consideration of behavioral, psychological, and emotional aspects often remains on the background. Some years ago, the first editor of this book proposed the concept of P5 medicine, by adding one-fifth requirement for the evolution of medicine to the original ones in the well-known P4 approach. This last P was related to psycho-cognitive characteristics of patients; specifically, besides being preventive, personalized, predictive, and participatory, medicine should become able to: 1. Engage patients in personalized treatment as well as management plans: patients should become competent, active, responsible managers of their own health 2. Analyze and improve quality of life not as a secondary but as a primary objective of the care process In order to achieve such aims, medicine should turn to psychology and cognitive sciences in order to understand how patients interpret and use information on their own healthcare and also how they do develop intentions and behavior which could be more or less useful toward their health and wellness improvement. Also, healthcare should develop and master its own techniques and psychometric instruments to be included in care practices to account for these aspects.
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