Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The New Business of Old Age

The Times reports on the development of technologies that may help to keep aging Americans out of long-term care facilities.

Longevity-focused researchers…are betting that baby boomers, unlike generations past, will not go gentle into the good night of long-term care. In fact, a few research groups at institutions like Oregon Health & Science University, M.I.T. and Stanford, along with foundations and the private sector, are devising policies and systems for an alternate scenario: older adults living independently at home for longer periods, whether that home is a private residence or a senior community.

Devices for I’ve-fallen-and-I-can’t-get-up catastrophes, they say, represent the old business of old age. The new business of old age involves technologies and services that promote wellness, mobility, autonomy and social connectivity. These include wireless pillboxes that transmit information about patients’ medication use, as well as new financial services, like “Second Acts” from Bank of America Merrill Lynch, that help people plan for longer lives and second careers.

Together, those kinds of products and services are already a multibillion-dollar market, industry analysts say. And if such innovations prove to promote health and independence, delaying entry into long-term care, the potential savings to the health care system could be even greater.

The New Business of Old Age


Anonymous said...

Excellent article, but how do you avoid the clutches of the conservators?

StandUp said...

I think the conservators consider them in the new business of old age, Anonymous!

Monica said...

Lots of money to be made off the old folks and now that the boomers are entering the Senior catagory, the cash registers should be ringing.

Ben said...

It is a good article and I hope it promotes a healthier attitude toward the elderly.