September 2010

If you have an XHealth hammer, everything looks like a nail

So if you think about an aging 'tsunami' -- doesn't it just make you think of mHealth and iPhones? Rant on.  I was on a call yesterday about an upcoming 'caregiving' and technology event -- as the call proceeded, the topic turned toward low-cost mHealth applications, ubiquitious at a Price Waterhouse tolerance level of $5 per month. [Side note -- PWC doesn't like 'mHealth', so they have renamed it 'Healthcare Unwired']. This week's Health 2.0, next month's Connected Health, not to mention eHealth, telehealth, wireless health, healthcare unbound or unwired -- now that's a tsunami. Note the $2.2 billion of new investment into biotech, medical devices and health IT -- just in the 2nd quarter of this year.  >>> Read more . . .

Aging in Place Technology Watch September 2010 Newsletter

On the road again -- manage my expectations, please. Flying is a chore -- and like most passengers, I am amazed that airlines don't do a better job of managing our expectations, whether it is about level of service, delays, additional charges for exit row seats, or credit-card only on the plane. Of course, my expectations are less important than the fiercely competitive and simultaneously predatory airline landscape -- they can do what they like because they own the gates and schedule for many destinations. And of course, in situations where there is competition, the airlines play hopscotch, adding a new charge, waiting to see if the others add it as well -- a new surprise for the unsuspecting consumer.

>>> Read more . . .

Update: Marketing Aging in Place Technology and Services

In my travels, I continue to hear about new vendors, new product and service ideas, some just an entrepreneurial gleam in the eye, some pre-launch, some on the market.  Hopefully those who haven't launched yet read and heed this previously-published advice -- now updated. And those already in the market, if your entrant doesn't reflect these updated suggestions, maybe it should: >>> Read more . . .

Towards an Aging in Place 2.0 vision

Nice goal, but how to age in place?  In the pendulum swing of all 'aging in place' all the time, a murky target has been set, but the tactics are more like a meandering and treacherous hiking trail than a well-marked pathway. Some of us will pick up and leave for a more service-rich environment in advance of need, usually at an age or level of actual or anticipated limitations. But these service-rich environments, typically Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs), represent a relatively small proportion of older age range of the 65+ population. And CCRC moves require sale of a house, downsizing of possessions, and a move that can be a traumatic change. In addition, these 'enclaves' (as described in a recent NY Times article) are not without financial issues. Certainly the word 'continuing' is a misnomer unless one counts a campus change to a smaller space for both person and possessions as not really moving. >>> Read more . . .

Falling among seniors: studied but not solved

Falling among older adults -- it's a problem. You would think that with all of the available information and technology, that there would simply be fewer falls among older adults each year. But you would be an optimist. According to the CDC, each year 40% of seniors fall (up from 30% ten years ago). I was thinking about this during a few visits to assisted living communities this past week, when the tour guide mentioned the personal, carefully designed 'chair exercise' program. Okay. >>> Read more . . .

Direct-to-consumer -- a viable strategy or a distraction?

Whoopee -- consumers might buy some products... With the announcement that Best Buy may have 'mHealth' devices ready for shopping in up to 500 stores, one might become just a bit excited that a tipping point has been reached -- and that it might encompass the full range of technology for aging in place. Well, it all depends on what you mean by tipping point. The Best Buy list of devices may include blood-pressure monitors, pedometers, and fitness watches -- devices, ideally, that will transmit information to a local or Internet-accessible network. Nice, but frankly, Best Buy has been experimenting for years -- 'up to 500' sounds good, doesn't it? >>> Read more . . .