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International Journal of Health Geographics

BioMed Central


Open Access

CAALYX: a new generation of location-based services in healthcare Maged N Kamel Boulos*1, Artur Rocha2, Angelo Martins2, M a n u e l E s c r i c h e V i c e n t e 3 , A r m i n B o l z 4 , R o b e r t F e l d 4 , I g o r T c h o u d o v s k i 4 , M a r t i n B r a e c k l e i n 4 , J o h n N e l s o n 5 , G e a r ó i d Ó L a i g h i n 6 , C l a u d i o S d o g a t i Francesca Cesaroni7, Marco Antomarini7, Angela Jobes8 and Mark Kinirons9 7 ,

Address: 1Faculty of Health and Social Work, University of Plymouth, Drake Circus, Plymouth, Devon PL4 8AA, UK, 2Location Based Information Systems, Information and Communication Systems Unit, INESC Porto, Campus da FEUP, Rua Dr. Roberto Frias, 378, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal, 3Telefónica Investigación y Desarrollo, Parque Tecnológico de Boecillo, 118-120, 47151 – Boecillo, Valladolid, Spain, 4Corscience GmbH & Co. KG, Henkestr. 91, 91052 Erlangen, Germany, 5Department of Electronic & Computer Engineering, College of Informatics & Electronics, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland, 6Department of Electronic Engineering, National University of Ireland, Galway, Galway, Ireland, 7COOSS Marche Onlus, Dipartimento R&D, via Saffi n° 4, 60121 Ancona, Italy, 8Synkronix IIIncorporation Ltd, Dunston House, Dunston Corner, Hemingstone, Ipswich IP6 9QD, UK and 9Department of Ageing & Health, St Thomas' Hospital (NHS), London SE1 7EH, UK

Email: Maged N Kamel Boulos* - mnkamelboulos@plymouth.ac.uk; Artur Rocha - artur.rocha@inescporto.pt; Angelo Martins - angelo.martins@inescporto.pt; Manuel Escriche Vicente - mev@tid.es; Armin Bolz - bolz@corscience.de; Robert Feld - feld@corscience.de; Igor Tchoudovski - tchoudovski@corscience.de; Martin Braecklein - braecklein@corscience.de; John Nelson - john.nelson@ul.ie; Gearóid Ó Laighin - gearoid.olaighin@nuigalway.ie; Claudio Sdogati - ricerca1@cooss.marche.it; Francesca Cesaroni - f.cesaroni@cooss.marche.it; Marco Antomarini - m.antomarini@cooss.marche.it; Angela Jobes - info@synkronix.co.uk; Mark Kinirons - Mark.Kinirons@gstt.nhs.uk

  • *

    Corresponding author

Published: 12 March 2007 International Journal of Health Geographics 2007, 6:9


Received: 9 March 2007 Accepted: 12 March 2007

This article is available from: http://www.ij-healthgeographics.com/content/6/1/9

© 2007 Boulos et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Recent advances in mobile positioning systems and telecommunications are providing the technology needed for the development of location-aware tele-care applications. This paper introduces CAALYX – Complete Ambient Assisted Living Experiment, an EU-funded project that aims at increasing older people's autonomy and self-confidence by developing a wearable light device capable of measuring specific vital signs of the elderly, detecting falls and location, and communicating automatically in real-time with his/her care provider in case of an emergency, wherever the older person happens to be, at home or outside.

Background Back in January 2003, we explored the concept of 'loca- tion-based health information services', and presented it as a new paradigm in personalised health information delivery [1]. Since then, location-aware applications and services, and location-sensitive mobile devices have undergone major improvements, and have become more widely available and less expensive [2]. These rapid devel- opments have made their use in mission-critical tele-care

and healthcare delivery significantly more prevalent today than it was in the near past [3]. A recent conference work- shop, Locare '06, was fully dedicated to the subject of 'location-based services for healthcare' [4].

The year 2007 has been described as 'the year of Global Positioning System (GPS)-enabled mobile phones' par excellence [5,6]. In fact, mobile phones lend themselves very well to location-based technologies, as David Sym-

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