GuiMarket: An E-Marketplace of Healthcare and Social Care Services for Individuals with Special Needs

GuiMarket: An E-Marketplace of Healthcare and Social Care Services for Individuals with Special Needs

M. Manuela Cruz-Cunha (Polytechnic Institute of Cávado and Ave, Portugal & CITEPE –Research Center in Production Technologies and Energy, University of Minho, Portugal), António Tavares (Polytechnic Institute of Cávado and Ave, Portugal) and Isabel Miranda (University of Minho, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-967-5.ch072
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Abstract

The healthcare sector has been continuously growing in importance in the past years throughout the entire world, and particularly in most Western countries and the U.S., where we witness an increase of expenditure in health per capita every year. This is related to many aspects of contemporary society, including an increase in life expectancy, the public demand for a better quality of life and better health services. This must be met with more cost-efficient approaches, and new technology-based solutions for providing health and other services. The chapter contextualizes the utilization of electronic marketplaces (e-marketplaces) for the social and healthcare sectors, how this field has been evolving in recent years, current challenges and trends, and their contribut to society. The authors also discuss a pilot project of an e-marketplace for healthcare and social services currently being developed in the Guimarães Municipality, including its goal, definition and implementation, as well as the commercially available enabling technology and tools.

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