Telemedicine Services: Aging at Home

The baby boomers range in age from 51 to 71 in 2017.  With the largest numbers of boomers currently between 55 and 61, the gray tsunami will be soon upon us.  In anticipation of these social changes, the healthcare’s traditional fee for service payment models are shifting.  The location where patients are monitored and treated is changing, as well.   As the U.S. population ages, (17% of us will be 65+ by 2020), healthcare providers become scarcer ( a predicted physician shortage of 6% and nursing shortage of 36% by 2020), and payers like Centers for Medicare and Medicaid reward health systems for making and keeping patients healthy (population health management), patients are increasingly likely to have their healthcare delivered at home.

Technology makes a difference.  And, we can make a difference by assisting our family members and friends to age in place in an environment that supports their well-being. Telehealth contributes to the flexibility of the decisions we make to support our friends and family.  Here is a video exemplifying home healthcare powered by telemedicine.

The Institute of Medicine and the National Academies Press released a study about “The Future of Home Healthcare.”  A comprehensive and well-researched document, it thoroughly discusses the future of home healthcare, taking into consideration all the factors that will impact it:  key issues and trends (demographics, clinical diagnosis), technology, workforce, models of care and payment, etc.