Technology and healthcare are two of the hottest industries in terms of employment outlook and revenue right now, and coincidentally, the two industries complement each other so nicely that they're like two adjacent puzzle pieces. Technology is increasingly a big part of healthcare management, and more recently, senior living. Whether your love one resides in a community setting, such as assisted living or independent living, or in her own home alone, new technologies are entering the market that can improve your loved one's safety, mobility and independence. Here are a few top trends in health technology:
- Wander protection. Several new programs and gadgets have been introduced that aim to protect elders from Alzheimer's-related wandering. Wanderers endanger themselves, as they can easily become disoriented and lost.
- Wi-Fi is a must. Seniors are becoming increasingly tech-savvy, and much like the working generation, wireless access is considered a necessity, not a luxury. Wireless internet access allows seniors to use their own laptops to stay in touch with family, friends and even business associates.
- Engaging websites. More and more, seniors and their families are turning to the internet in their search for senior housing options. Assisted living (and independent living, nursing homes and other types of senior housing providers) websites must be engaging and informative. The better your facility is tapped into the web, the more referrals you're likely to receive. That means having a presence on prominent social networks, a quality static website and interacting with your potential customers on a regular basis. The internet is no longer an ancillary marketing tactic.
- Opportunities for web-based continuing education. Baby Boomers are hesitant to retire, and today's older adults aren't about to let their minds go to waste as they age. Senior living providers are increasingly partnering with local colleges and universities to offer free or discounted continuing education opportunities, allowing seniors to remain sharp and even delve into totally new topics in retirement.
- Going green. Not a "tech" trend in the literal sense, but environmental friendliness tops the list of many seniors' priorities when choosing senior housing. Think: energy-efficient lighting, low-VOC paint and sustainable resources, like bamboo flooring. Going green can involve tech devices that help simplify processes, but the green revolution is all about making the most of the resources we have. Many of today's seniors have experienced an economy slump at some point during their lives, so the "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle" concept in a senior housing complex rings true. And, it's always good to feel like you're doing something to help preserve the future of our planet for generations to come! An official environmentally-friendly certification is a hot selling point for any senior living community.