Health Monitoring of Elderly Persons with Multiple Chronic Conditions in the Home Environment


The world’s aging population is increasing significantly, and Europe is already creating policies which make use of Information and Communication Technologies to help increasing the financial efficiency in traditional healthcare systems for the elderly. Information and Communication Technologies can improve the comfort, care and quality of life of elderly people. Meanwhile, the Internet penetration in residences is becoming very large and residential gateways are increasing the range of services to offer.

The objective of this project was to create a service to monitor a person’s health through wireless sensors, gather the data in a Commercial-Off-The-Shelf router, and send it to a remote health caretaker server. To overcome the barrier between older people and technology, its configuration, maintenance and deployment is done remotely and automatically. This system was made using Open Services Gateway Initiative (OSGi).

The whole system is composed by three main blocks — Auto-Configuration Server, Caretaker and Home Environment — which interact with each other over the Internet. The Auto-Configuration Server controls all the necessary information for the maintenance and functioning of the system. The Caretaker is the entity responsible for providing medical care to the Patient which has Health Care Professionals who need to monitor the Patient’s vital signs. The Home Environment is the most important block in this study, where the vital signs of the Patient are monitored using wireless health sensors connected to a Gateway. The Gateway comprehends a modular system that offers interoperability between different vital signs and different caretaker servers. This system is capable to update and manage all of its software modules automatically, without requiring any technical intervention on-site.

This document introduces the subject area, specifies the architecture of the system, and explains the implementation steps taken during the development of a proof-of-concept of a home health monitoring system. The system was evaluated, its performance tested, and a final solution was achieved, a solution which accomplishes the base requirements to be offered by an health monitoring service.


Author: Joel Moura

Type: MSc thesis

Partner: Faculdade de Engenharia da Universidade do Porto

Year: 2011