Looking back a decade ago, aging in place was just taking off as the best option for senior housing. Most seniors wanted to stay and grow older at home, most likely because they couldn't afford to move elsewhere.
But the growing costs of home maintenance, paying healthcare expenses, and even finding in-home care will make it tough for us to age comfortably and safely.
Remembering the time when I helped my parents, a lot has changed in the business of aging and senior care. From an increase of WiFi in the home, the mobile PERS (Personal Emergency Response Systems ) were just a concept, and the iPad had not been announced. That was only ten years ago.
Even digital health as we know it today, was still several years away, and voice technology wasn't even in sight. AARP's study about aging in place was a year old or so, but they dared to forecast the market to be $20 billion by 2020.
The oldest Baby Boomer turns 73 this year, at least half of adults age 65+ have broadband and insurance incentives push tech-enabled health care into the home.
Since seniors face a shortage of workers to provide care, and adult children are not available to help out parents, something will have to give.
The caregiving demands drive policy change in 2019. And I bet there will be more tech enabled care than ever before.
Even Alexa skills like I discussed two weeks ago grow abundantly and I forecast millions more to be written and available over the next few years.
It was 2006 when living in Austin -- I contacted HEB (a big grocery chain) and asked if they would consider delivering groceries to older adults at home. The reply? "We're thinking about it." Guess how many chains and big boxes deliver food today? Yeah, all of 'em.
And back in 2002 when helping my parents, I remember looking for family caregiving information and resources online -- the only (somewhat) helpful websites were the Area Agency on Aging, Alzheimer's Association, the Federal and State government official websites and a few others.
Today? We're on information overload.
Medicare Advantage Plans will get in the game of helping pay for or design tech services for seniors at home. And their focus is to keep us out of the hospital and recovering at home -- my money's on tele-health keeping us there.
And wearable health-smart devices will help manage the chronic conditions, our medications, and our diets.
I talked a bit more about the age in place trends, so watch the LIVE video and tune in next week when more information about trends will be added.