The Telehealth Quality Group (TQG) is one of the ten partners funded by the European Commission to undertake research into standards and standardisation around ICT for Active and Healthy Ageing. The project lasts until September 2018. It is led by De Montfort University (Leicester). It links the TQG with other high-profile European and international partners. The partner list is set out below.

The PROGRESSIVE project will set in place a ‘dynamic and sustainable framework where the contribution of standards and standardisation for ICT can be maximised for Active and Healthy Ageing (AHA).’ The TQG role includes ensuring that the project maintains a strong ethical foundation that will determine how good practice in standards and the standardisation process is recognised. Needless to say the TQG role will also include strong inputs around telehealth (and telecare) as well as contributing to ‘deliverables’ around smart homes, age-friendly designs and interoperability.

The ICT issues for telehealth are, of course, highly visible. We have, for instance, many opportunities and some challenges that arise from new technologies and the increasing capacity of communications media. The ‘Active and Healthy’ ageing agenda is, however, less well considered. It is, nevertheless, highly important to telehealth services because it helps us to turn away from what can be over-clinically driven approaches (focused on one-way service ‘delivery’ for dependent older people) towards approaches concerned with wider well-being and service ‘provision’ (focused on engaging with and empowering older people). The latter approaches, it is considered, can often meet, in more flexible ways, the needs and choices of service users. They can also help build levels of knowledge, skills and capacities so that older people are better able to make choices about their lifestyles (in work or retirement) and to self-manage in relation to any health conditions. The project will, in fact, be considering how older people can be engaged in the standardisation process so that their voice is reflected in the content of standards that are intended to benefit them. Exciting and important developments in standards and the standardisation process are, therefore, envisaged!

The partner list is as follows. More detail will be available in the New Year on the project website.

  • De Montfort University (UK, Lead Partner)
  • The Open University (UK)
  • Telehealth Quality Group (UK)
  • Age Platform Europe
  • EHTEL (the European Health Telematics Association)
  • Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (Italy)
  • Stichting Nederlands Normalisatie – Instituut, NEN (Netherlands)
  • Deutsches Institut fuer Normung E.V, DIN (Germany)
  • Associazione di Normazione Informatica, UNINFO (Italy) and
  • Asociacion Española de Normalizacion y Certificacion, AENOR (Spain)

The project carries the support from, amongst others,

  • European Committee for Standardisation, CEN
  • European Consumer Voice in Standardisation, ANEC
  • British Standards Institute, BSI (UK)
  • International Society for Telemedicine and eHealth, ISfTeH
  • UC Leuven Limburg (BE)
  • CRETECS Centre of Expertise in Care Technology (BE) and
  • European Association of Service Providers for People with Disabilities, EASPD