Artificial Intelligence, Healthcare and the Law: Regulating Automation in Personal Healthcare, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Artificial Intelligence, Healthcare and the Law

Regulating Automation in Personal Healthcare, 1st Edition

By Eduard Fosch Villaronga


288 pages | 16 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9780367076610
pub: 2019-11-07
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The integration of robotic and artificial intelligent systems into healthcare settings is accelerating. As these technological developments interact socially with children, the elderly, or the disabled, they may raise concerns besides mere physical safety; concerns that include data protection, inappropriate use of emotions, invasion of privacy, autonomy suppression, decrease in human interaction, and cognitive safety. Given the novelty of these technologies and the uncertainties surrounding the impact of care automation, it is unclear how the law should respond.

This book investigates the legal and regulatory implications of the growing use of personal care robots for healthcare purposes. It explores the interplay between various aspects of the law, including safety, data protection, responsibility, transparency, autonomy, and dignity; and different robotic and AI systems, such as social therapy robots, physical assistant robots for rehabilitation, or wheeled passenger carriers. Highlighting specific problems and challenges in regulating complex cyber-physical systems in concrete healthcare applications and exploring potential solutions, it critically assesses the adequacy of current industry standards and emerging regulatory initiatives for robots and AI. After analyzing the potential legal and ethical issues associated with personal care robots, it concludes that the primarily principle-based approach of recent law and robotics studies is too abstract to be as effective as required. Instead, it recommends bridging the gap between general legal principles and their applicability in concrete robot and AI technologies with a risk-based approach using impact assessments.

As the first book to compile both legal and regulatory aspects of personal care robots, this book will be a valuable addition to the literature on robotics, artificial intelligence, human–robot interaction, law, and philosophy of technology.

Table of Contents

List of Tables and Figures




Chapter 1: From forced labor to robots

Chapter 2: Automation in healthcare


Chapter 3: Robot Impact Assessment

Chapter 4: Personal care robots: context and robot type

Chapter 5: Robot legal framework

Chapter 6: Comprehensive safety

Chapter 7: Consumer robotics

Chapter 8: Responsibility, liability and accountability

Chapter 9: Privacy and data protection

Chapter 10: Dignity and broader implications



About the Author

Eduard Fosch-Villaronga, Ph.D., LL.M., M.A., is currently Marie Sklodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Researcher at the eLaw Center for Law and Digital Technologies at Leiden University in The Netherlands.

About the Series

Routledge Research in the Law of Emerging Technologies

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / General