Quarkside

20/05/2013

Ageing: House of Lords should know

Filed under: Technology — lenand @ 6:26 am
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A recent report from the House of Lords Committee on Public Service and Demographic Change warns that the Government and our society are woefully underprepared for ageing.  During 2020–2030 they expect:

  •  51% more people aged 65 and over in England in 2030 compared to 2010
  •  101% more people aged 85 and over in England in 2030 compared to 2010
  •  10.7 million people in Great Britain can currently expect inadequate retirement incomes
  •  over 50% more people with three or more long-term conditions in England by 2018 compared to 2008
  •  over 80% more people aged 65 and over with dementia (moderate or severe cognitive impairment) in England and Wales by 2030 compared to 2010.

Among their many recommendations, these stand out as a message to everybody, before they, and their families, are too old to benefit.  People need to:

  • be more focused on prevention, early diagnosis, intervention, and managing long-term conditions to prevent degeneration, with much less use of acute hospitals
  • be centred on the individual person, with patients engaged in decisions about their care and supported to manage their own conditions in their own homes so that they can be prevented from deteriorating
  • have the home as the hub of care and support, including emotional, psychological and practical support for patients and caregivers
  • ensure older people only go into hospitals or care homes if essential, although they must have access to good specialist and diagnostic facilities to ensure early interventions for reversible conditions and prevent decline into chronic ill health.

Technology has a part to play – small in terms of overall costs – but a critical part of the Ageing Infrastructure.  Today, this is inadequate, fragmented and and inflexible.  This provides great opportunity for UK technology and the TSB is investing, such as the DALLAS programme. Innovation is key.

Another source of innovative ideas is coming from social media culture; informal meetings of people with ideas and energy.  Have a look at the Meetup network.  The Internet of Things has a very active group and Health 2.0 is looking at Dementia this week (there are spaces).

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18/05/2013

Prepare to grow old

Filed under: Innovation,People,Technology — lenand @ 7:54 am
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Quarkside does not need to do research when there are already good resources. For example, a review of the Telecare market produced by the Aktive project.  The UK claims to be leading the world and the Technology Strategy Board is pumping funds into ageing related projects.

The message is that people should consider installing technology in the whilst they are fit and active. This will have to be self-funded, because statutory health and care agencies bodies will not pay until there is a crisis. By monitoring normal daily activity, advanced software can detect changes that point to action that could prevent a crisis.  Potential savings are enormous.  Being able to live in your own house for one year extra is worth £30,000 to £50,000.

The minor problem for the elderly, or major opportunity for entrepreneurs, is that nobody is supplying a low cost home activity monitoring service.  DIY is not an option.

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