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October 2022

Five 2022 AgeTech Trends That Matter to Older Adults

Taking stock of 2022 in AgeTech. We are approaching end of the year – it has been a good one for emerging technologies that can help older adults, today commonly known as AgeTech.  The timing is right – as 56 million Americans are now aged 65+, looming older population growth has awakened the sleeping giant. The investor and technology market, historically known for tech ageism, is beginning to wake up to the AgeTech opportunity. Why? As an aging population grows, the supporting labor force for aging services, both in communities and for in-home care, simply isn’t there, lured away by better pay across multiple sectors. What technologies can help mitigate this growing labor crisis in the senior care (home care, home health care, senior living, long-term-care) services market?

Why did FDA Approval of Over-the-Counter Hearing Aids Take So Long?

Was this a ‘breakthrough’ on hearing aid pricing? Mull over the phrase from the KFF announcement (italics are mine), “Prices and features will vary for the new OTC hearing aids — much as they do for prescription aids. A pair of prescription devices typically sells for $2,000 to $8,000. Some of the technology found in the pricier prescription aids will be available in the cheaper OTC aids.” This was also true of the Personal Sound Amplification Product” (PSAP), described in 2017 as being helpful to people with mild to moderate hearing loss. What took the FDA 5 years to complete  final review of essentially the same technology available in 2017, especially when they were ordered by Congress to do so? Note hat 48 million Americans have some degree of hearing loss (more than 400 million worldwide) and most do not have any hearing assistance devices. Note that uncorrected hearing loss is correlated with dementia.

The Future of Sensors and Older Adults -- Looking Forward 5 years

What changes in care technology will be different later in this decade? Consider the implications of adoption of sensors to deliver and improve the care of older adults -- then look forward five years.  What will be different in this second technology wave, both from today and from the market a decade ago? Is this optimism justified?  Does the shortage of labor to serve the aging population make sensor technology essential in delivering care?  Many of the interviewees for this new report, due out in November, 2022, think that innovation in offerings, caregiving labor shortages, and a swelling demographic aged 80+ all combine to boost both utility and adoption across all care sectors.  What specifically might be different?

Did you miss one? Check out September’s Aging & Health Tech blog posts

September brings falling leaves, rising and falling hopes. Turns out that VCs are waking up to the opportunity in the longevity economy. Recognizing that people may live a lot longer, perhaps even to 100. How do you prepare for such a long life? Behold the rise of the active adult lifestyle, now enabled with a boom in 55+ rental communities. Combine that change with the ‘Forgotten Middle Market’ of senior living. Consider the Chicago Tribune article about tech for aging in place. Now add in the shortage of workers in home care, health care, and nursing homes. If there was a time to look at the role of monitoring and engagement technologies that augment and assist the worker in the care of older adults – it would seem that this is the time. Here are four Sept blog posts on these and related topics:

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