U.S News & World Report: Technology for Aging: How Technology Will Support an Aging America

Author: Philip Moeller

The digital technology revolution is intersecting with the realities of an aging society. It’s not clear yet which, if any, products or services will emerge as “killer apps” for seniors, their families and their caregivers. But at least some of the flood of tech products, software and related apps are moving toward commercial development, and outlines of an industry are taking shape.

One powerful focal point of these developments is “aging in place” – the phrase that describes the overwhelming preference by Americans to grow old in their homes and avoid nursing homes and other institutions as long as they can. A growing mountain of behavioral research finds that people are more likely to remain healthy and stay independent by living at home.

This assumes they can continue to receive the help they need as they age and can stay connected to friends and social opportunities. That’s a big question for many seniors, and, increasingly, technology is playing an enormous role in providing an affirmative answer to it. At the same time, the soaring cost of institutional care is pressuring private care companies and government entitlement programs to seek affordable in-home solutions whenever they can.