0622_Senior Life Digital Edition - Page 9

SPECIAL SPECIAL PROMOTIONAL PROMOTIONAL SECTION SECTION

CAREGIVERS ARE THAT IMPORTANT COMPONENT IN HELPING PEOPLE REMAIN IN THEIR HOMES — AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE HEALTH CARE SYSTEM .
Cynthia Driver Associate Executive Director , Live Well at Home by Eskaton
of them are aged 65 to 100 , she notes that their age range extends to younger patients depending on the circumstances of their condition and recovery .
“ Upon discharge from the hospital , patients ’ doctors decide if they need physical therapy ,” she says . “ If they can make it to a clinic , they go to out-patient therapy . However , if they ’ re not ambulatory enough or it ’ s not safe for them , they go home , or to rehab or skilled nursing then home , and that ’ s where home health care comes in . We don ’ t want them to backslide and end up back in the hospital .”
It is the compassionate professionals in caregiving and home health care services who are enabling us to age in place right up to the point of hospice care . These two segments of in-home services will be more critical than ever in the coming years as our population ages .
Jennifer von Geldern is a freelance writer who covers regional businesses , charities , events and the people who enrich our communities .

STAYING CONNECTED

NEW TECHNOLOGY IMPROVES QUALITY OF LIFE
By Jessica Hice
Over the last two years , the adoption of technology among older adults has increased , growing the connection between seniors and their loved ones and caregivers . AARP reported in December 2021 that the pandemic caused tech usage in the over-50 population to “ skyrocket ” in the last few years .
“ The pandemic accelerated the use of technology among older adults to stay connected to family , friends and health care providers ,” agrees Therese ten Brinke , director of strategic initiatives for Eskaton Support Center . She says that apps offering social media , transportation , grocery , wellness and telehealth are used most frequently .
Eskaton offers assisted living , retirement communities and senior wellness services in the Sacramento region , and they ’ re always on the lookout for the best user-friendly , wearable , robotic and integrated smart home solutions . Eskaton ’ s Innovation Lab is constantly testing out the latest technology solutions to enhance the well-being of the residents who live within their communities .
“ Currently , we have integrated smart living solutions into over 1,000 apartments ,” ten Brinke says . “ These solutions include voice-enabled smart devices , automated and motion-sensor lighting , smart thermostats , and an artificial intelligence system to reduce the likelihood of falls .” She adds , “ Beyond the home , wearing smartwatch technology and connecting the health data to a platform such as eCare21 can empower older adults to be more proactive about their health and well-being .”
More and more older adults are being drawn to this new technology . AARP reported in April 2021 that over 40 percent of older adults view technology in a positive light , and 4 out of 5 rely on technology to stay connected to loved ones . Older adults have even made the shift to streaming rather than watching cable TV , from 44 percent to 58 percent between 2020 and 2021 .
“ Older adults continue to incorporate tech into their lives ,” the report says . “ Certain tech behaviors formed during the pandemic appear to stay , such as video chat , making online purchases , ordering groceries , banking , and engaging in health services , with older adults making more purchases and financial transactions online than previous years .”
Interactive technology continues to be adopted in new ways to offer entertainment and tools for day-to-day living . In late 2020 , Amazon added extras to Alexa like Alexa Care Hub , which allows families to set customized alerts for their aging loved ones and incorporates fall-detection technology and even tools for managing shopping lists .
A recent study published by Public Health Reviews reported that older adults wishing to age in a place of their choosing might be more equipped to do so because of patient-focused emerging technology that allows them to stay connected when and where it matters .
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