I recently spent some time getting updated on all the new emerging technologies that can help benefit aging baby boomers and their families today. Wireless monitoring kits that provide cameras as a part of security systems are heavily used today. This technology enables family members to observe their loved ones as they relax in their recliners in front of the TV or as they sit at their kitchen table eating. The monitors are strategically placed so they can be seen in almost every area of their home. Health care innovators, researchers and educators predict that many additional gadgets will soon help turn our family members' homes into a medical nanny, keeping tabs on everything from pill taking routines to signs of imminent crisis. These will all be devices that help link people together.
Baby boomers are very independent and will push for these new technologies. They will also be necessary as many predict a decline in the number of available paid and unpaid caregivers. A recent AARP report stated that in 2010 there were 7.2 middle-age caregivers for every 80 year old, but by 2050 that number will plummet to 2.9. In this nation there are 78 million baby boomers who are facing the prospect of aging with a shrinking population of caregivers. Seniors without family caregivers will have options to move into technology laded seniors homes or will outfit their own homes with the technologies. Research shows that even small changes in daily habits can potentially point to more serious problems to come. If we can monitor our family with technology, this can allow us to see any changes and react to them as necessary. There is a large movement to provide options for Aging in Place. Aging in place means continuing routines while health data are wirelessly relayed to doctors, caregivers and concerned family. The benefit of this is not only happier elderly family members, but also reduced health care costs as well.