Care Strike – User Stories

Anonymous user
Male, 78 years old

For many years I had a nurse, Asta, that came every day for a few hours to make sure I took my pills, kept hydrated and controlled my blood pressure. Asta was a great help with all things medical, and she also kept me company, but as a result, my children didn’t come to see me very often because they knew that I was being taken care of. When my insurance decided to stop paying for a nurse and instead subscribe me to an ageing-in-place service, I didn’t like it at all.

They replaced Asta with monitors and wearables, arguing that it is more efficient, but at what cost? I was sitting alone at home with no one to talk to, and I couldn’t get my children to come either because they could check their app and see everything was fine with me; “I’ll stop by soon” was all I was getting.

A few weeks passed, and I was walking to the kitchen when I slipped and fell. I was lucky and didn’t get hurt, but I stayed on the floor for a few minutes to make sure everything was fine. Suddenly, out of nowhere, I got a call from my eldest asking if I was ok, if I got injured and needed help. I didn’t know my watch could tell my children I fell! They all came, and it was great to see them, but then they left, and days passed, and I was feeling lonely again, and that’s when I thought about it: could I trick the watch into thinking I fell down?

Anonymous user
Male, 83 years old

I have been living by myself for the last seven years. I have a system where food is delivered to me four times a week, and I have a person who comes to clean and cook twice, so I am independent. But during the last year, I started needing help with health-related things, like keeping track of my medications and staying hydrated. My daughter Ebba started to come every second day to check on me, keep a record of my pills, and ensure I’m drinking water.

At first, she stayed for a bit, and it was nice to chat and see each other often, but over time, it became a burden for her, so one day, she came with a smart box for my pills and a little bracelet that could measure my hydration levels. She explained it was the most efficient way to keep track of my health and that she would know if something was wrong and immediately come by to check on me.

The technologies worked, as she said, very efficiently, keeping track of pills and my hydration, but they also very efficiently managed to get rid of my daughter’s visits. A few months after I started using the bracelet, I woke up feeling very ill. I didn’t get out of bed all day and forgot to drink water. The day goes by, and I am trying to sleep when suddenly my daughter comes into the room; she looks concerned: “Are you ok? I got an alarm that you were severely dehydrated!” It turns out my bracelet had sent her a warning, and I had my phone in the other room, so I didn’t know she was calling me. She stayed home that night taking care of me. The next day I reflected on what happened and how the bracelet works; basically if I don’t drink water, my daughter comes! So, what if I intentionally dehydrate myself every now and then?