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Think seniors and technology don’t mix?
New technology is constantly changing how we think about and implement senior care services. From connecting families during the pandemic to improving the availability of healthcare, there are plenty of exciting senior living technology trends worth looking out for.
Senior living technology is what the name implies. That is, it is technology that older adults, caregivers, and their family members can use to access information, resources, and more as it relates to senior living and wellness.
Lots of industries have had to revamp themselves during the COVID-19 pandemic; the senior living industry is no exception. The majority of these tech changes are centered around improving connectivity and healthcare for seniors while reducing the spread of the virus.
During the coronavirus pandemic, many senior living facilities have used technology to keep residents safe while bolstering the number and quality of services they offer.
For example, many communities reduced outside foot traffic by hosting virtual tours of their facilities. This way, prospective residents could scope out locations without exposing themselves to the virus.
Additionally, video chat services allowed senior living residents and their families to connect with each other—without spreading the virus—through video calls. Given the increased popularity of certain online services and apps, like Facetime and Skype, many senior care facilities are now prioritizing Wi-Fi connectivity to ensure such resources can be more easily accessed as the pandemic continues.
Healthcare is yet another industry that has had to use technology in innovative ways to reduce the spread of COVID-19. For instance, the amount and quality of telemedicine services, like virtual doctor’s visits, skyrocketed in 2020. Experts expect that this upward trend will continue, with some estimating that the telemedicine market will grow +22.4% annually between 2021 to 2028.
Experts anticipate that the wearable technology market will be worth nearly $265.4 billion by 2026. That’s a big deal for older folks, as wearable technology has many senior care applications.
For example, fall prevention and response is a major concern in senior health and wellness, with the CDC stating that millions of ER visits are the result of falls each year. With a wearable medical alert device, emergency response teams and caregivers can receive information regarding the well-being of the wearer in real-time, reducing how long it takes for someone to receive care in the case of an accident, such as an older adult who has fallen.
Retirement communities aren’t the only places where senior tech can improve the lives of older adults. Many homes and apartments can also use smart technology to make living at home safer and easier for seniors.
For example, the installation of a smart home means seniors can perform certain tasks, such as turning off lights, without ever getting up. While that might not seem like a big deal, it can reduce the odds of a bad fall, which can have devastating health consequences for senior citizens.
Smart tech seems to be here to stay, with experts estimating that the number of digital voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa will double between 2020 to 2024.
There may come a time when your loved one will require long-term care in a residential facility. Fortunately, senior living technology and other industry innovations will ensure that residents have a higher quality of life.
If you want to make the process of moving a loved one into a senior living community just a little easier, you’ve come to the right place. Our directory shows thousands of senior housing locations—including assisted living, independent living, and memory care communities—across the country, so your loved one can find a place to call home wherever they’re at.