Meet or hear Laurie in one of the following:

Boston, Portland, ME May 1-May 15, 2017

Washington, April 28-29, 2017

Washington, June 1-5, 2017

PERS Summit, Park City Utah, September 26-28, 2017

Related News Articles

04/23/2017

Acute shortages of home health aides and nursing assistants are cropping up across the country.

04/19/2017

Program allows early-stage dementia patients to participate in their own care planning.

04/19/2017

And I read it. Sigh. 

04/19/2017

Should people take notice of Apple’s entrance in the market?

04/18/2017

Falling confidence in all age groups — with the exception of Generation Y drivers born from 1977 to 1994. 

Market Overview for Technology for Aging in Place

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Excerpts from the 2017 Update Technology Market Overview

As we approach the date for the upcoming week of March 20-24 in Chicago, it is worth noting a few trends. The marketplace of products and services today is still fragmented, with ever-shifting cottage industries comprised largely of startups, challenged by channel complexity and end user resistance.  But with fragments assembled into an overall puzzle, this business for boomers and beyond has been estimated by some to grow to $20 billion by 2020 or even $30 billion by 2017.  The larger market will be based on growing boomer awareness and aging. It will be strikingly different from today – fueled the growing availability of in-car technology, mobile PERS health integration, wearable fitness and health devices, in-home ‘Voice First’ IoT hubs and smart phone apps. In particular:

Predicting the future of health tech and baby boomers – are we there yet?

Baby Boomers, Wearable and Mobile Health Tech – A status report. During 2015, the California Health Care Foundation (CHCF) sponsored a research project to evaluate the future likelihood of wearable and mobile health tech. This Boomers and Wearable Health Tech 2015 report considered wearables and health apps -- and the likelihood of these technologies helping baby boomers (the oldest is now 71 and 6 years along with Medicare) manage their own care and avoid unnecessary services and costs.  After all, the mobile health app market alone was predicted in 2013 to reach $26 billion by 2017.  Consider the status of each of these predictions – which were based on 21 expert interviews held during 2015. Were the experts correct or overly optimistic?  Both. Here are the 2015 predictions and what has happened since:

Finding Paid Care -- Introducing the Paid Caregiver Support Ratio (pCSR)

Shortage of paid care workers – a growing problem, not well-quantified by region.  As AARP predicted in 2013, by the time the boomers arrive in their 80’s, just nine years from now, there would be a population deficit of prospective care providers aged 46-64 – the caregiver support ratio (CSR). But perhaps the more intriguing question – where are the workers who could, should, or would provide care? In a study released in December 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) stated that the compound annual growth rate for home care services, particularly personal care aides, between 2014 and 2024 would be nearly five percent, the highest among all industries. Compare the number of workers that provide direct care ( for example, personal care aides) to retail – these jobs are low-paying at approximately $11/hour and most would say the work is physically more difficult than other low-paying categories.  And tech-enabling the care, while streamlining sourcing and tracking, does not close the available labor gap.

Home Hero is sort of done (maybe, for now??) – What can others learn?

After the long, long, long HomeHero goodbye – was the analysis correct?  HomeHero, based in LA, was one of the three dubbed here as 'Home-egos' to launch within the past 2-3 years -- along with Honor and Hometeam -- and the first to shut its home care business down.  But, unlike most shutdowns, this was a moment for founder Kyle Hill to recap the 'tech-enabled' home care firm’s life and closing story in exhaustive and exhausting detail, complete with pictures. Considering its $23 million of investment, it should have landed on the same Forbes page as the other home care investments –overlooked perhaps because its investors were not typical VCs.  But HomeHero’s example illustrates the enthusiasm and limited business analysis of startups in the older adult space, Lively being one of the most recent, but there are many more which were publicized loudly and then disappeared quickly without even a puff of smoke – or a founder post-mortem. 

Seven intriguing health technology offerings from HiMSS 2017

HiMSS – a tech-enabled vision of health potentialAs health spending approaches 20% of the US GDP, health tech innovation has become a visible lever for its curtailment. At this annual HiMSS event those with comfortable shoes could see a plethora of ways to improve outcomes, lower costs, change behaviors, engage patients, streamline the back office processes, about telehealth, confronting the onslaught of security breaches, sessions on population health, healthcare transformation and improved care delivery workflow.  This was an opulent show, spanning a 1300-participant exhibit hall with major player (anchor) exhibitor booth investments writ large.  Here are seven interesting examples that could benefit the older adult market– listed in alphabetical order:

Seven Examples of 'Voice First' Approaches to Benefit Older Adults

Has the 'Voice First' interface trend gone mainstream -- and can it benefit seniors?  Some think so. What has initially been driven by Apple platform Siri and the Amazon Echo – and now with Google Home -- is about to become mainstream (or as it is described, 'Voice First’) as the primary way we interact with technology.  There is even a possibility soon that both the Echo and Google Home devices could be utilized for voice calling.  Here are seven examples of 'Voice First' approaches and experiments for seniors. Soon there will be more that reference Google Home – please comment with your own 'Voice First' example -- these are from the company websites or news stories:

Five Tech-Enabled Ride Service Options for Older Adults

Tech-enabled transportation options for older adults.  Who would have thought of such a specialization before Uber and Lyft, but today, even Uber and Lyft have introduced specialized offerings. All are interested in (or have been) expanding beyond their home base or current business. Some are scalable nationwide – or want to be. Is the service appropriate for the older adult population it is intended to serve?  Is there a growing opportunity for home care companies to add transportation to their services, especially those home care companies that already have consumer apps?  Does this signal a business opportunity for senior housing firms? Information below is from the websites of the firm or related media.

Pew Fact Sheets Shed Light on the Tech Adoption of Older Adults

The upshot: older adults are not buying into the trendiest tech.  Maybe it is because they can’t afford it, aren’t aware of it, or are unconvinced of its value.  Or maybe the unconvinced who could afford to spend the money fear privacy violations or identity theft. Or are burned out at staring at too much information on Facebook or Twitter.  Considering their twenty years of life expectancy at age 65, perhaps overcoming technology adoption resistance and gaps should be a greater priority for those who want to help those in the oldest decades live their best lives. Looking at the update from Pew, observe:

Time to ask what technology should be in the home of older adults?

Tech-enabling home care is one lens on future of care.  Venture capitalists listen carefully for trends fueled by talk in the media.  During the past several years, they heard plenty -- about the longevity economy and an investment-related network, digital health watchers like Rock Health and Startup Health 'moonshots', and all things boomer and their tech interest about the future. So they saw home care as a growth opportunity.  Buried in and mostly around the wave of investment and media interest in boomers (oldest age now is 71), the tech industry also noodled a bit more about the over-hyped Internet of Things, emerging voice recognition technologies, and technology adoption trends (everybody except for those aged 75+).

2017 Tech-Enabled Home Care Report: Rising worker scarcity, family expectations

Why does tech-enabled home care show potential? Growing life expectancy and shrinking assets limit options of older adults in late life, leaving those who may need care more likely to receive it at home. The biggest constraint for this industry is scarcity of willing workers. Although a greater role for technology is envisioned by many, the highly fragmented home care industry has made incremental progress in achieving it.  As the industry matures, standard practices and tech-enablement have begun to take shape. With the coming age wave, venture capitalists have been intrigued and funding has exploded, exceeding $200 million by 2016 year end. 

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