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Super-fast broadband will benefit elderly & disabled

Ofcom report details schemes utilising fast connections

Super-fast broadband will benefit the elderly and disabled Brits in a number of ways, including offering access to services such as remote health monitoring, says Ofcom.

The watchdog's Advisory Committee for Older and Disabled People has published a report on the ways in which 100Mbps broadband could be utilised and those pilot schemes that are already employ super-fast broadband to improve the lives of the over 55s.

Allowing patients to be diagnose without having to leave their house and mentoring and befriending schemes using webcams and video chats, were among the examples cited by the report as "promoting independent living so that older and disabled people can lead healthier, more fulfilling lives".

However, the report also identified that factors including cost, computer literacy and the ability to access a 2Mbps broadband connection that would create challenges and barriers in getting the elderly to use the services.

"For many people next generation broadband is already a reality. Our research shows that next generation broadband is about much more than multi-player gaming, faster music downloads or high definition TV," said Jo Connell, chairman of the Advisory Committee on Older and Disabled People.

This report offers a glimpse into the potential services and how this new technology could help to transform many older and disabled people's lives."

See also: Nine million Brits have never been online

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