HomeNL: Homecare Assistance in Natural Language. An Intelligent Conversational Agent for Hypertensive Patients Management

  • Lina Maria Rojas-Barahona
  • Silvana Quaglini
  • Mario Stefanelli
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5651)


The prospective home-care management will probably offer intelligent conversational assistants for supporting patients at home through natural language interfaces. Homecare assistance in natural language, HomeNL, is a proof-of-concept dialogue system for the management of patients with hypertension. It follows up a conversation with a patient in which the patient is able to take the initiative. HomeNL processes natural language, makes an internal representation of the patients’ contributions, interprets sentences by reasoning about their meaning on the basis of a medical-knowledge representation and responds appropriately. HomeNL’s aim is to provide a laboratory for studying natural language processing (NLP) and intelligent dialogues in clinical domains.


NLP Dialogue Systems Telemedicine Hypertension 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Allen, J., Byron, D., Dzikovska, M., Ferguson, G., Galescu, L.: Towards conversational human-computer interaction (2001)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bickmore, T., Giorgino, T.: Health dialog systems for patients and consumers. J. of Biomedical Informatics 39(5), 556–571 (2006)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Allen, J., Ferguson, G., Blaylock, N., Byron, D., Chambers, N., Dzikovska, M., Galescu, L., Swift, M.: Chester: towards a personal medication advisor. J. of Biomedical Informatics 39(5), 500–513 (2006)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Baldridge, J.: Lexically Specified Derivational Control in Combinatory Categorial Grammar. PhD thesis, School of Informatics. University of Edinburgh (2002)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bos, J., Klein, E., Lemon, O., Oka, T.: Dipper: Description and formalisation of an information-state update dialogue system architecture (2003)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Haarslev, V., Moller, R.: RACE system description. In: Description Logics (1999)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Rojas-Barahona, L.M.: Health Care Dialogue Systems: Practical and Theoretical Approaches to Dialogue Management. PhD thesis, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy (2009)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Giorgino, T., Azzini, I., Rognoni, C., Quaglini, S., Stefanelli, M., Gretter, R., Falavigna, D.: Automated spoken dialogue system for hypertensive patient home management. International Journal of Medical Informatics 74(1386-5056), 159–167 (2004)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Baader, F., Calvanese, D., McGuinness, D.L., Nardi, D., Patel-Schneider, P.F. (eds.): The Description Logic Handbook: Theory, Implementation, and Applications. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge (2003)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Larsson, S., Traum, D.: Information state and dialogue management in the trindi dialogue move engine toolkit. Natural Language Engineering 6, 323–340 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Boros, M., Eckert, W., Gallwitz, F., Hanrieder, G., Niemann, H.: Towards understanding spontaneous speech: Word accuracy vs. concept accuracy. In: Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Spoken Language Processing (ICSLP 1996), pp. 1009–1012 (1996)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lina Maria Rojas-Barahona
    • 1
  • Silvana Quaglini
    • 1
  • Mario Stefanelli
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer Science and SystemsUniversity of PaviaPaviaItalia

Personalised recommendations