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Market Overview for Technology for Aging in Place

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GE Healthcare Partners With Living Independently's QuietCare

GE Heathcare announced this week "that it will distribute and co-market Living Independently's QuietCare products globally." QuietCare "alerts caregivers to behavioral changes that may signal potential health issues or emergency situations." My view -- this represents an intersection between the health and aging in place marketplaces. How it gets categorized may significantly influence market adoption.

AARP Healthy@Home Survey Provides Clues About Technology Uptake

For those interested in technology for aging in place, the 2008 AARP Healthy@Home Survey by Linda Barrett, Ph.D, of AARP Knowledge Management, is a remarkable resource and should be carefully studied - I have only begun to absorb some of the key points in it and will return to this again many times.

Gadgets and Gizmos for consumers, Senior Value Chain?

To get a feel for the overall shape and status (or non-shape and early status) of the Aging in Place Technology market that goes direct to consumer, imagine wanting to know what's available to help you remain safely and happily in your home. These collections got me thinking about the randomness of these technologies and how and to whom they are marketed.

Home Monitoring - Beyond Personal Emergency Response

Mom is in Florida, adult children are far away. I see it all the time --  frail elders who want to stay where it's warm. and of course, they have adult children who can't or won't live near them. And technology vendors, as I saw at the AARP convention, and described in this well-written NY Times article, want to fill this nervewracking void.

Differentiating assistive technologies and aging in place

Assistive technology spans a number of devices to compensate for the inability to do a task that otherwise is difficult, including medication management, stair lifts, keyless door entry systems, etc. 

Is This the Future of Medication Management?

Folks are thinking about how to help seniors remember their to take their medication-- but have they got it right?  Clearly, there's a problem, with a 700% increase in deaths from medication errors at home, and of course the risk from not complying with prescription guidance and frequency has escalated risk of complications and hospitalizations.

Day 2 AARP Convention — Jitterbug phones

Jitterbug — Simple cell phone (Samsung hardware) — using it is easy — screen is readable, hearing-aid compatible, prompts are clear and doesn’t require a manual to figure out how to get your voicemail. One touch to 911, not linked with any service provider — so none of this ‘You can have a new phone if you extend your contract’ business. No roaming, no long distance, no time of day calling. The company is in the simplicity business, according to one marketer I like that — more technology providers should enter the ’simplicity’ business.

AARP Convention — day 1

An overwhelming convention — 25,000 people, every type of service: travel, home care, living environment, health care, motorized chair…you name it. Overwhelming and exhausting. Tomorrow I’ll try to be more focused. So — let’s recap MIT’s Coughlin-Lau “Cathedral Builders Wanted” hierarchy of needs to age in place: from bottom to top — health, safety, connection, contribution, and legacy. So much energy is focused on the first three — almost nothing on the last two.

Videophones and elders living alone

So one-third of elderly adults who live outside of institutions live alone. Many who live alone have no living children or see their children rarely. And 60 percent of those older than 75 years report being lonely. So says a textbook called “Aging: The Healthcare Challenge” by Carole Bernstein Lewis. So what about the videophone? Wouldn’t it make sense that there is a market in videophones for elders?

When will a business make money at providing aging in place technologies?

I think the answer to this question is both simple and complicated — and the complicated part is why it is taking so long to see clear results.

Simple — when there is agreement about the urgency, payment model, and target audience among the triumvirate of category providers.

That’s where the complexity surfaces. We’re talking about Home-related industries (interior design, architect, building contractor), information technology providers (like Intel, Microsoft, Honeywell, Cisco), and the health care supply chain.

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