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Find that friendly interface: technologies that reduce social isolation

A number of technology-based interventions have been offered to older adults in a bid to reduce social isolation, but do they work?

This is what researchers from Queensland University of Technology sought to find out by undertaking a literature review of studies.

The team found eight different technologies that have been applied to alleviate social isolation: general ICT; video games; robotics; personal reminder information and social management systems; asynchronous peer support chat rooms; social network sites; telecare; and 3D virtual environments.

They found a number of the technologies have a positive impact on reducing social isolation but said more studies are needed to evaluate the effectiveness of new technologies.

Aged Care Insite sat down with review co-author Azadeh Rezvani, from QUT, to discuss whether some technologies were more effective than others in reducing social isolation and what more needs to be understood about technology-based interventions.

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