Researchers at the Louisville Innovation Summit have revealed how technology is helping the elderly stay healthy and independent.
According to a 2013 AARP report, the caregiver gap is growing. They estimate that by 2030, the ratio of caregivers to older people will be four to one – a drop from today’s seven to one.
As a result, more than $6.5 billion dollars has been invested into digital health start-ups in 2016 alone.
Products such as sensors, GPS, Skype, and voice activation power “tech-enabled homecare” – systems which can be activated through the use of speech – have enabled older people to stay connected with the world while living independently, the researchers said.
They said this has all been made possible by the internet, through which half of the population over 75 are connected to.
However, Some of the biggest problems the tech industry has encountered are around aging transition, transportation for the elderly from home to hospital and from assisted care to hospital.
But industry analyst Laurie Orlov said they can solve this problem with specialist software.
She said: “We have been far too focused on hardware. The future will all be software.”
Agreeing, Mark Cavicchia, chief innovation officer at RC1X, said: “From all of our technologies, there’s a tremendous amount of data being generated.
“But now, information is being kept in siloes. What will happen over the next 10 years is data integration, AI, and predictive analysis so data can be used to help you in real-time through applications and things that don’t necessarily involve you going to a clinic.”