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AI and machine learning

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AI and machine learning

A decade later -- Next Generation Response Systems have arrived

The more things change in the PERS/medical alert industry… Long ago (10 years, to be exact), a survey report plus future market predictions was published.  From website review, the cash cow world of medical alert devices and recurring revenue appears from the outside to be largely unchanged. On the LifeAlert website, the woman is still falling and can’t get up. Medical Guardian also informs that every 11 seconds, 1 in 4 Americans aged 65+ experience a fall-related injury. The National Council on Aging site, NCOA features medical alert vendor comparisons in which the vendor earns a commission if purchased through the site. Vendors still claim a that market penetration is still low, that only 8% of seniors believe they need such a device, a helpful persuasion tactic to motivate security dealers and retailers.

New research report -- The Future of AI and Older Adults

05/14/2023

The current status and future potential are discussed in the new report The Future of AI and Older Adults from Aging and Health Technology Watch. The report is based on interviews with experts from 26 organizations across healthcare, senior living, and technology. AI technologies have exploded onto the market in multiple categories. As an aging population faces a dwindling care workforce, it is also emerging that can assist organizations that provide care and help older adults to maintain independence.

The Future of AI and Older Adults 2023

Advances in AI got the full attention of the technology industry, which is undergoing its first major disruption since the arrival of smart speakers and voice in 2014. Multiple industries see compelling opportunities, including healthcare providers, senior living, customer service providers, training and remote monitoring service offerings. Government organizations are investing in AI and aging startups and programs.

From New Report: Future of AI and Older Adults

New report published - Future of AI and Older AdultsFrom the findings: One of the media-fueled risks today with the plethora of AI-related hype is the tendency to find and publicize deficiencies and mistakes, reinforcing the premise that it is too early for benefits across industries like senior living or home care. This cycle was not helped by the behavior of earlier AI technologies like voice assistants. And there are barriers that need to be addressed to realize the full potential, which is not yet fully understood. These include:

The AI opportunity – more and better services

Wondering if there's any news about AI?  Just from yesterday, May 3, 2023 – that list goes on and on.  MIT Technology Review packs all the AI news that’s fit to pack into an up-to-the-minute digest. Stanford provides the State of AI in 14 Charts. The New York Times explains for the uninitiated. So does the Wall Street Journal.  In the world of hype for those who have followed the tech industry, the phrase ‘greatest thing since sliced bread’ comes to mind.  But narrowing the focus on the world of older adults, the possibilities are impressive. Here are four categories of AI for older adults – all discussed in the report, The Future of AI and Older Adults, published the week of May 15:

Observations about AI and older adults

It’s a scary time to think about AI. Healthcare workers are nervous, professional caregivers think it’s too early. To read the media, reporters are sharing their anxiety. AI is terrifying about the possibility of making people (and journalists) obsolete or initiating accidental destruction and havoc.  Doctors worry about the elimination of whole specialties like radiology and educators are in a tizzy trying to determine the real author of student projects. The media frets frequently about mistakes made by ChatGPT.   But the situation is vastly different in the older adult marketplace. It is a space that benefits greatly from AI’s capability to learn from accumulated data, combined with its ability to predict possibilities like Alzheimer's disease based on that data, informing caregivers, families, and other stakeholders.  Other countries with serious caregiving labor shortages see the possibilities – and if anything the US senior care industry is late to the party. 

Chatbots and conversational AI offer help with finding care

Chatbots can be helpful to older adults and families. As part of research on the Future of AI and Older Adults, interviewees are talking about the potential role of chatbots – and why they should matter. Not surprisingly, a search for ‘chatbots and older adults’ reveals research studies targeting those aged 60+, startup investment, for example, Lena, which evolved into Lena Health for scheduling appointments, and a small study about what makes a compelling chatbot. But for older adults  or families who hesitant about searching for information or frustrated with online sites or call trees, chatbots can be the ideal solution. They can also boost tech confidence and user self-sufficiency. Although the real purpose of chatbots is to save response center labor and boost efficiency – they should help the user get what they need.

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