Telehealth and mHealth… Game Changers for Senior Living Facilities & Residents
With approximately 10,000 Baby Boomers retiring daily, combined with an overtaxed healthcare system running short on doctors and nurses, senior living facilities are placing much focus on Telehealth and Mobile Health (mHealth) solutions to improve care, contain costs, and improve overall management.
With telehealth and telemedicine platforms that include mobile devices, audio-video links, wearable devices, and connected devices, a senior living facility can connect with a doctor, nurse, or specialist in real-time and in many cases, eliminate the need for an EMT visit or transport to the hospital.
Studies show that approximately 60 to 70 percent of all nursing home transfers to the hospital are unecessary. Sending a senior to the hospital only increases costs, medical tests, and attention by medical staff, not to mention the risk of exposure to a wide range of other proven, adverse effects including infections.
Virtual connection and care is also extremely advantageous If a medical situation occurs in off hours — in the middle of the night, or on weekends and holidays. Additionally, virtual connection is very useful for more common and less acute care, such as treatment of a common cold, allergic reactions, or health concern that might otherwise call for a scheduled trip to the doctor’s office. New uses for it are always in the works. For example, now senior communities can connect with physical therapists for individual and group exercise and rehabilitation programs.
Virtual connection has also been a viable solution for those senior living facilities that aren’t always a quick ambulance ride away from the nearest hospital. Since many facilities do not have a doctor on staff 24/7, telemedicine and mHealth platforms have become life-saving options.
As with any burgeoning and breakthrough technology, expect telemedicine and mHealth to expand their current uses and value in the market. In addition, expect the development of new and enhanced personalized telemedicine apps for both patients and clinicians. A report by Mordor Intelligence predicts that global telemedicine will be worth more than $66 billion by the end of the year 2021.
Fortunately, senior living and housing residents seem receptive to using telehealth and mHealth technologies mainly for these 4 reasons:
- Ease of use
- Real-time health care
- More hours of service availability
The rise in the aging population, longevity of life, and a shortage of medical staff are major factors driving the rapid growth in telemedicine. Expect to see telemedicine become much more prominent in the Senior Living Industry. It’s remarkable to say the least that patients and residents will have access to top-quality medical care at their fingertips.
MedBest is a nationwide senior living executive recruiting firm that was established in 2001.
We specialize in recruiting quality executive talent for all types of senior living facilities across the US including Assisted Living, Continuing Care Retirement Communities, Memory Care, Independent Living, and Skilled Nursing Homes.