3 Senior Care Technology Trends to Watch

March 25, 2014
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In 2014, the youngest generation of baby boomers turns 68.

In 2014, the youngest generation of baby boomers turns 68.

Not only are seniors themselves turning to technology to better manage their health, but also health care providers and payers are increasingly incorporating digital care tools to improve patient care and lower costs. 

What innovations can we expect to see in this area?

Here are 3 major digital health technology trends that are setting the pace for the market in 2014:

1. Wearables

Wearable devices and fitness trackers are pervading the consumer market. Though reports demonstrate over half of consumers are interested in buying wearable trackers, analysts claim the first generation of tracker were a dud. New gadgets hold promise: Fitbit’s Force band is gaining in popularity, but more advances are needed if devices are to appeal to aging boomers. Ease of use, discreteness, and sharing features are a focus for the future.

2. Aging in place technologies

The majority of seniors want to remain in their own home for comfort and security – and economics support this point of view. Chronic conditions and illness account for billions of health care costs annually – not to mention the mental and emotional toll it takes. It’s far more cost effective to maintain an aging person’s independence at home.  New products in the senior care space will be focused on early detection of chronic disease, injury prevention, and increased social engagement.

3. Real-Time Care Management Monitoring

According to the Brookings Institute, the ability to remotely monitor patients could save the US health care system 197 billion between 2010 and 2035. Combining the movement towards aging in place at home with advances in internet, video, and wireless technology, it’s the perfect storm for an explosion of utilization for digital care management and monitoring systems like eCaring. Analysts cite remote monitoring capability to capture a deeper range of information, from psychological state to medication behaviors, bathroom visits and more.

What big trends do you think we’ll see from the next generations of senior care technologies? What problems are in desperate need of solving?