Increasingly, commissioners and providers of services for people with intellectual disabilities are turning to assistive technology and telecare as a potential solution to the problem of the increased demand for services, brought about by an expanding population of people with intellectual disabilities in the context of relatively static or diminishing resources. While there are numerous potential benefits of assistive technology and telecare, both for service providers and service users, there are also a number of ethical issues. The aim of this paper is to raise these issues and to set them within the ethical framework proposed by Beauchamp and Childress. There is a need for a wider debate as a first step in the development of strategies to address the issues raised in the paper.
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Funding: Equal Support Unit, ECOTEC Research & Consulting Ltd, Birmingham, UK.
Competing interests: None.
↵i The Act is designed to support programmes of grants to States to address the assistive technology needs of individuals with disabilities, and for other purposes.