Skip to main content

Digital technologies as truth-bearers in health care.

Bartlett, R., Balmer, A. and Brannelly, P., 2017. Digital technologies as truth-bearers in health care. Nursing Philosophy, 18 (1), e12161.

Full text available as:

Bartlett Balmer Brannelly 2017 Digital tech truthbearers green.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.


DOI: 10.1111/nup.12161


In this paper, we explore the idea of digital technologies as truth-bearers in health care and argue that devices like SenseCam, which facilitate reflection and memory recall, have a potentially vital role in healthcare situations when questions of veracity are at stake (e.g., when best interest decisions are being made). We discuss the role of digital technologies as truth-bearers in the context of nursing people with dementia, as this is one area of health care in which the topic of truth-telling has been hotly debated. People with dementia have been excluded from research studies and decisions that affect their lives because they are not regarded as truth-bearers-that is, as being capable of giving truthful accounts of their experiences. Also, considerable research has focused on the ethics of lying to and deceiving people with dementia. Given their increasing prominence in healthcare settings, there has been surprisingly little discussion of what role digital technologies might play in relation to these questions of truth and deception. Drawing on theories from science and technology studies (STS), we explore their possible future role in some of the truth-making processes of health care. In particular, we discuss the potential value of constraints on use of SenseCam to support the accounts of people with dementia as part of their care.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:advocacy care ; agency ; dementia ; technologies ; truth-bearing ; truth-telling ; Deception ; Dementia ; Humans ; Nursing Process ; Technology ; Truth Disclosure
Group:Faculty of Health & Social Sciences
ID Code:32861
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:07 Oct 2019 11:20
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:18


Downloads per month over past year

More statistics for this item...
Repository Staff Only -