Baby boomers & health technology adoption.

Medication management and reminder tools for boomers

By 2012, boomers had revealed plenty of chronic disease. According to the CDC, “19 percent of adults, ages 55 to 64 had diabetes, 40 percent were obese and 51 percent had high blood pressure Due in large part to the prevalence of these chronic conditions, use of prescription drugs is high. In 2009-12, approximately 45 percent of adults in this age group took a prescription heart drug, about 32 percent took a cholesterol-lowering drug, 16 percent used prescription drugs for chronic heartburn, 15 percent used prescription painkillers, nearly 13 percent used some type of diabetes drug, and more than 14 percent took an antidepressant.” What tools can help them remember to take/dispense the dose? Here are five examples, descriptions from websites/reviews:

category tags: 

Six digital health tools to help prevent or manage diabetes

Digital tools for diabetes prevention and management.  Population health statistics about diabetes are alarming health professionals, particularly concerning today with 26% of older adults having diagnosed and even undiagnosed diabetes. So there's no surprise – innovation is wanted and much needed. New technology startups are popping up all around to help prospective patients prevent the onset of diabetes – and/or manage it more effectively. While some research casts doubt on the sustainability of these tech interventions, that doesn’t stop new entrants from jumping into the fray. Here are six of the tools available – with descriptions from news articles, smartphone-ish vendor sites or far more informative press reports:

category tags: 

Baby boomers and new health technologies -- what strategy matters?

What needs to change to help baby boomers benefit from new health technologies? Baby boomers (b. 1946-1964) are not benefiting from the wearable and mobile health (abbreviated here as "xHealth") technologies.  Technology innovation in health-related technologies may not be reaching the largest population segment that most needs them. Consider the health status of boomers today – and note their current non-adoption of wearables.  Note that only one-third of baby boomers download smartphone apps – and that the top ones are not related to their health. Note the privacy issues with inadvertent sharing of health status from smartphone apps and social networking sites – and the growing issue of medical identity theft.  If we are to obtain the full benefits of health-related consumer-facing technologies, many of the issues and resulting solutions adopted in other industries will need to be considered in the xHealth technology industry.  

category tags: 

Boomers will seek health care services from home

Trust in the healthcare system declines as consumer confidence in themselves rises. What’s behind consumers wanting to take charge of their own health?  In a recent NCPI-Pfizer study, 88 percent of respondents said they are confident in their abilities to take responsibility for their health, with 92% saying they like being in control. Is this a positive development or a positive face on growing fear of the in-person healthcare delivery system? Or is it related to widespread loss of trust in doctors? Is that distrust based on publicity about the outrageously high level of medical errors? Or do they worry about health insurer carelessness? Perhaps consumers have had deeply disappointing hospital care experiences.

category tags: 

MyFitnessDog -- the future of boomers, pets, and technology

New York State catches up to the dining habits of boomers and their pets.  Making its way through the state legislature in New York is a bill that will let diners bring their dogs into the restaurant, imitating practices in California, Europe and elsewhere and overturning prior rules, if not actual practice.  Thirty-seven percent of baby boomers own a pet, dare we say that might be a dog? Or two to three dogs?  It seems pretty simple now to acquire an emotional support letter that bypasses the rules prohibiting pets on planes that are not trained service dogs. And a number of major retailers (store manager willing) now permit dogs inside the store.  Apartment buildings and hotels now have dog-friendly specials (the Westin Heavenly Dog Bed) and even dog-friendly cocktail hours.

category tags: 

Five Boomer Health Technologies from AARP’s Live Pitch

Mobile mattered at AARP’s LivePitch.  Picked from the venture capital/investment community, facilitated by Venture Valkyrie Lisa Suennen, four judges listened this past week to 15 health-related startup high pressure pitches.They diminished in length from four fairly leisurely minutes to five attempts to say it all in a single fly-by one minute -- winners were selected by the judges based on the company’s and market potential. In an interesting twist on these types of events, audience members also voted - using benefit-to-user criteria. Some targeted and/or benefited an aging in place segment while others appear mobile or Healthcare in their offerings. These five are listed in alphabetical order and the material is drawn from their websites:

category tags: 

EHR and medical errors -- whose fault is it anyway?

EHR – garbage in-disaster-out (GIDO) – has data disaster reached healthcare?  Will the system be blamed for failure -- or will experts tackle culture, behaviors or procedures that underpin systems?  Perhaps you saw a recent book by Robert Wachter, the Digital Doctor. Its subtitle – “hope, hype and harm at the dawn of medicine’s computer age” tells you where he nervously stands. Consider the true story that runs throughout the book. An antibiotic dose is entered into Epic with a selected but incorrect unit of measure. That mistake began online with the doctor, but then was counted out by the pharmacy robot, viewed by the pharmacist and handed to the patient by the nurse. The result was a near-fatal dose of 39 pills instead of just one.  Why had the technology part so caught Dr. Wachter’s eye? He believes that naive users trust the system more than their own eyes or the need to check with each other and ask a question.  

category tags: 

Samsung forms partnerships that should matter to health care

Has anybody noticed all the news releases from Samsung lately? It is intriguing to consider the amount of publicity (beyond press releases) that Samsung’s initiatives would get if it were a US company.  Apple and IBM give 5 million iPads to Japanese seniors – and that is big health-related news in the US. When Apple Pay sneezes or their watch manufacturing has issues, it gets big press in the US. It's almost like the tech reporters camp outside the Cupertino headquarters waiting for a sign or smoke signal. But meanwhile, Samsung clearly has business development folks on the ground – and their partnerships keep stacking and stacking – and other than the press releases, little is said except about the global smartphone shipment war, which they are losing some weeks and winning other weeks.  So here are a few announcements that have made it through my alerts – all information is from the press releases and/or articles:

category tags: 

Health care, insurance and identity theft – bad news

Had your identity stolen lately? Oh well, you probably did. A few months ago, California’s Anthem Blue Cross admitted that someone had stolen 80 million health records, complete with name, address, SS # and more. A certain amount of self-congratulation can be found in its letter to the 80 million: "The information accessed may have included names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, health care ID numbers, home addresses, email addresses, employment information, including income data. We have no reason to believe credit card or banking information was compromised." What a relief. But with the ‘minimal’ data stolen, the thieves got busy and filed for tax refunds from the IRS, which helpfully encourages direct deposit of the refund. TurboTax halted its electronic filing process recently due to likely fraudulent filing. And the IRS, which admits to weak fraud detection tools, will issue refunds as a result of this travesty. 

category tags: 

Taking stock of tech and health care in the time of HIMSS

Doctors are miserable, patients are in peril.  Well prior to this week’s Health IT fest about the transformative nature of tech innovation, a sober landscape of context had emerged. Last summer, death by medical mistakes had reached an all-time high of 400,000.  Meanwhile, another study verifies that doctors are miserable – and the EHR technology they use is one of misery’s sources. So many articles cover the absurdity of the design and mandated procedures --  not to mention the spectacular price tag --one might have thought doctors would have the power to make it work better. Not so. And of course, you can see this with your own doctor, slogging through multiple EPIC screens, just to a) catch up on your history, and b) prescribe a medication. And after the hospital stay, just when you thought the patient was safely out of the hospital, there’s that understaffed short-stay rehab – growth fueled by Medicare dollars, with one out of five patients harm.

category tags: 

Pages

Subscribe to Boomer Health Tech Watch RSS