The flexibility to stay in a single’s dwelling or group safely, independently and comfortably can reduce health care costs, keep away from or delay admission to institutional care, and ease the stress on household caregivers.
Many older adults and their caregivers depend on expertise to assist them age in place. From Alexa-type gadgets to on-line grocery supply to artificially clever sensors that monitor frailty, there’s little doubt that the appropriate gadgets used appropriately can enhance security and peace of thoughts for each elders and their caregivers.
With the inhabitants of individuals over age 60 rising and the variety of caregivers shrinking, age tech — digital expertise constructed across the wants and desires of older adults — is changing into a booming business.The age tech market is anticipated to succeed in $2 trillion, according to The Gerontechnologist’s 2021 Age Tech Market Map.
Age tech may also help older individuals (or caregivers) monitor nearly all the pieces — together with remedy schedules, when the fridge was final opened and what number of occasions an elder acquired up to make use of the toilet in the course of the evening. Whereas many older adults are snug with and even embrace expertise, there are additionally some downsides. Gadgets will be deserted as a result of they both fail to stay as much as preliminary guarantees or are too difficult, too invasive or simply an excessive amount of of a trouble, in response to researchers. Some elders are uncomfortable with the trade-offs between extra security and perceived or precise lack of privateness. After which, there are problems with affordability, entry and the digital divide.
“For older adults, it’s crucial to offer an built-in good resolution, not simply good expertise,” writes Laurie Orlov, founding father of Getting older and Well being Expertise Watch, the place she supplies evaluation and steering about developments that allow older individuals and boomers to enhance their high quality of life.
Orlov is among the knowledgeable panelists for AHCJ’s upcoming webinar, Getting older in place expertise: challenges and developments, at 1 p.m. EST/10 a.m. PT on Wednesday, April 6.
What do households want to make sure their family members keep protected and wholesome? Panelist Leslie Kernisan, M.D., M.P.H., a geriatrician, and founding father of betterhealthwhileaging.net, will take a look at precise wants that come up when an older grownup tries to age in place. What issues do they (and sometimes, the household) find yourself making an attempt to unravel?
Talking of options, Jeffrey Kaye, M.D., director of ORCATECH (Oregon Center for Aging & Technology) at Oregon Well being & Science College and a professor of neurology and biomedical engineering on the college, will spotlight ORCATECH’s Life Lab, which might be a nationwide aging-in-place expertise mannequin. Kaye is main a multi-site, nationwide study funded by the Nationwide Institutes of Well being and the Division of Veterans Affairs.
Many individuals assume seniors aren’t considering expertise. However seniors have proven they will regulate to an ever-evolving expertise panorama in addition to different age teams, according to an article on SeniorLiving.org. In accordance with the article, greater than half of older adults purchased a brand new tech product in 2019, comparable to a smartphone, laptop computer pc or good dwelling machine. And an estimated 75% of older adults with an web connection reported utilizing it every day.
A current College of Michigan survey requested individuals ages 50-80 about their use of and curiosity in cell well being apps. Twenty-eight p.c reported utilizing no less than one cell well being app. General, 34% of older adults mentioned they used or had used apps for train, 22% for vitamin, 20% for weight reduction and 17% for sleep, according to the report.
Standard expertise for seniors included meals supply service apps, transportation and ride-sharing cell apps, and video chatting packages to maintain up with grandchildren and others. There are even digital retirement communities by which seniors can keep in their very own houses however be a part of a membership group that helps seniors make medical appointments, or get a handyman to make repairs.
Some 268 such “villages” with greater than 40,000 members exist within the U.S., and an extra 70 are in improvement, Kaiser Health News reported recently. They’re not but a mass-market possibility for ageing in place, the article mentioned, however they provide social connection via boards comparable to dialogue teams, lessons, or outings, or different social occasions.
Journalists attending the webinar ought to stroll away with a wide range of story angles and concepts from specialists. We hope you may be a part of us!