Special Issue "Creating Age-friendly Communities: Housing and Technology"

A special issue of Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 28 February 2019

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Joost Van Hoof

1. Faculty of Social Work & Education, The Hague University of Applied Sciences, Den Haag, Netherlands
2. Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences, Wrocław, Poland
Website | E-Mail
Interests: technology and housing for older people; gerontechnology; design for dementia; urban ageing; thermal comfort and ageing; healthy building services engineering and technology
Guest Editor
Dr. Hannah R. Marston

Health and Wellbeing Priority Research Area, School of Health and Social Care, The Open University, Buckinghamshire, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: digital games; gerontology; gender; design and gamification; interaction/flow/immersion; oldest old/centenarians; millenials/gen X; mobile (health) apps; active & healthy ageing
Guest Editor
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Katie Brittain

Department of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, University of Northumbria, Newcastle, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: social impact that illness can have on the lives of older people; the physical, social and technological environment pose challenges and opportunities for older people and their wider community
Guest Editor
Dr. Helen Barrie

Hugo Centre for Population and Migration, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: older people, community connectedness, the built environment and social networks; inter-generational family ties, ageing and migration, age friendly communities, and demographic change in rural and regional Australia

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The number of older adults is increasing rapidly, and this demographic shift puts an increased level of stress on worldwide healthcare systems. The vast majority of older adults wish to age in place, and many make use of long-term care services, including homecare, rehabilitation services, and social support. One way to support older people to live the life they wish to live is through the age-friendly cities initiative, a world-wide program to make cities better-tuned to the needs of older citizens. Making cities more age-friendly can be done through dedicated housing facilities, home modifications and adaptations.

With advances in technology, the domain of engineering and design offers a wide range of solutions that support daily function, activities, and participation, facilitates the provision of healthcare, and offers means for leisure to older people. Too often, end-users of architectural and technological solutions are not consulted in the design processes and the implementation of the solutions in practice. Their inclusion in these processes is paramount to the success of the proposed and implemented solutions.

The purpose of this Special Issue is to publish high-quality research papers as well as review articles addressing recent advances in age-friendly cities in relation to housing (including urban planning) and technology, both in the broadest sense of the word. Original, high quality contributions that are not yet published or that are not currently under review by other journals or peer-reviewed conferences are welcomed.

Prof. Dr. Joost van Hoof
Dr. Hannah R. Marston
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Katie Brittain
Dr. Helen Barrie
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Healthcare is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 550 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Assistive technologies
  • Physical environment/space
  • Social Media
  • Connected care
  • Telehealth and telecare
  • Community care
  • Wearable devices
  • Gamification
  • Rural ageing
  • Urban ageing
  • Intergenerational relationships
  • Long-term health conditions
  • Social connectedness
  • Physical activity

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle The Physical Environment of Nursing Homes for People with Dementia: Traditional Nursing Homes, Small-Scale Living Facilities, and Green Care Farms
Healthcare 2018, 6(4), 137; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare6040137
Received: 2 November 2018 / Revised: 22 November 2018 / Accepted: 22 November 2018 / Published: 26 November 2018
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It is well recognized that the physical environment is important for the well-being of people with dementia. This influences developments within the nursing home care sector where there is an increasing interest in supporting person-centered care by using the physical environment. Innovations in
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It is well recognized that the physical environment is important for the well-being of people with dementia. This influences developments within the nursing home care sector where there is an increasing interest in supporting person-centered care by using the physical environment. Innovations in nursing home design often focus on small-scale and homelike care environments. This study investigated: (1) the physical environment of different types of nursing homes, comparing traditional nursing homes with small-scale living facilities and green care farms; and (2) how the physical environment was being used in practice in terms of the location, engagement and social interaction of residents. Two observational studies were carried out. Results indicate that the physical environment of small-scale living facilities for people with dementia has the potential to be beneficial for resident’s daily life. However, having a potentially beneficial physical environment did not automatically lead to an optimal use of this environment, as some areas of a nursing home (e.g., outdoor areas) were not utilized. This study emphasizes the importance of nursing staff that provides residents with meaningful activities and stimulates residents to be active and use the physical environment to its full extent. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Creating Age-friendly Communities: Housing and Technology)
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