Predictive analytics is an area of data science that is getting a lot of attention in health care.
Predictive analytics offers a tantalizing solution to problems plaguing resource-restrained hospitals. Namely, if providers can predict which patients will be readmitted within 30 days, or who will acquire an infection in the hospital, they can apply scarce resources to those high-risk patients and change the predicted outcome. This has the potential to improve quality outcomes and lower costs. Continue reading
Family caregivers want and need technology that allows them to better support their loved ones, but only about seven percent of respondents in a recent national survey actually use available caregiving technology.
New research finds a huge gap between what caregivers say they want and actual adoption of apps, programs, or hardware. Lack of awareness, about appropriate options or the potential caregiving benefits, is one reason cited by a representative sample of family caregivers. Continue reading
Family gatherings during the holidays are an ideal time for adult children to assess the well being of aging parents and other older relatives.
This is especially important for those who may visit just a few times a year, since changes in mental or physical health and safety issues in the home may be more noticeable. Holiday visits are a good time to ensure that aging parents can still care for themselves.
Get tips on covering this annual story: what families should look for, questions to ask and resources to consult.
Image by Enrique Bosquet via flickr.
A new study from the RAND Corporation calls on policymakers to improve long-term services and supports (LTSS) for the growing number of people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and other dementias and their caregivers. The report focuses on policy options at the intersection of dementia and LTSS.
An estimated 15 percent of Americans over age 70 suffer from dementia, but the number of seniors with Alzheimer’s disease is projected to triple by 2050, affecting as many as 14 million in the United States. This will place an unsustainable demand on dementia-related long-term services and supports, according to the report.
The estimated annual costs of dementia care are between $159 billion and $215 billion, which could more than double by 2040 if the age-specific prevalence rate of the disease remains constant as the nation’s population grows older. U.S. policymakers have made funding for clinical responses to dementia a priority. Continue reading
Image by Enrique Bosquet via flickr.
Providing care and support for older adults is expensive, drains time and energy of family caregivers, and can make family lives chaotic. The repeal of the CLASS Act leaves the United States with no national long term care services and support plan for the millions of older adults who need it now, and the millions more who will need it in the next 20 to 30 years.
As part of last year’s “fiscal cliff” bill, Congress established a Commission on Long-Term Care to investigate options and make recommendations on how our nation can address this growing challenge. The 15-member panel is working under tight deadlines to propose solutions that offer cost-effective health and social services to seniors, and support their caregivers, who are frequently caught between raising their own families, work and caring for aging relatives.
Lynn Feinberg, senior strategic policy adviser for AARP’s Public Policy Institute, testified before the commission on the urgent need for family caregiver supports. “What I was struck with the most at this most recent hearing, was virtually everyone who testified spoke about the importance of family support in long term services and support,” she said. “Everyone was recognizing this was not just an aging issue, or not just a woman’s issue, but it’s a family issue that really touches everyone and increasingly affects more people and will affect most everyone in the future.” Continue reading