We’ve vaguely addressed ageism when it comes to tech in our other articles. Yes, seniors want the same advantages that technology brings others. The digital divide, however, is more of an issue. So, what causes this divide? Generally speaking the digital divide, regardless of age, has to do with disposable income.
“Fully 81% of older Americans whose annual household income is $75,000 or more say they own smartphones, compared with 27% of those living in households earning less than $30,000 a year” Pew Research 2017
Most people want access to affordable and convenient health care. With the COVID-19 pandemic, TeleMedicine and eHealth are becoming more popular with everyone. It’s unlikely that will change or access will go away anytime soon.
Like most things we want, we have to ask for them; eHealth is no different. Again, the pandemic is likely helping move access to eHealth forward. Growing concerns about unnecessarily exposing oneself have made contactless health appointments important.
“From a practical perspective, it becomes apparent that communicating the benefits eHealth holds to seniors is of high importance. The more seniors see an actual benefit of IT and eHealth to support their health and well-being, the more likely it is that they make more use eHealth.” Science Direct
There are a lot of eHealth apps and programs online including Alpha Medical . Though they clearly market to young adults, especially women in child-bearing years, it may be a good resource for the older Gen X and younger Baby Boomers.
There’s nothing like having the convenience of routine prescriptions mailed to you on a regular basis. That said, most pharmacies and medical insurance companies have a prescription-by-mail program. Be sure to ask.
It’s easy to be skeptical about our personal privacy when it comes to electronic records. HIPAA laws are in place to protect us and our data. If you think about it, it is more private to give our information on a tablet than having people overhear us talking at the counter at the doctor’s office. Some of that can be embarrassing.
“Older adults have diverse needs and preferences that, in part, are driven by their experiences and frustrations with the health care system. Results can help inform the design and implementation of technologies to address gaps in care and access to health information for older adults with chronic conditions who may benefit the most from this approach.” NIH 2017
Regardless of whether you supplement your Medicare policy with eHealth vendors or meet with your doctor over Zoom, access to good health care is about choice. Wasting time in the waiting room for routine appointments can get old -- fast. How would you use eHealth and TeleMedicine?
“Alpha Medical is distinguished as an online healthcare provider group committed to serving patients, especially patients who are challenged by access to affordable care. We believe that many medical conditions, both chronic and acute shouldn’t require a drawn-out process or multiple appointments at a brick and mortar office, especially not during a pandemic. If you’re a senior with medical conditions such as menopausal symptoms, or eczema, depression or need refills of your medications for high blood pressure and high cholesterol, you can be fully and carefully managed through asynchronous, remote care.” Mary T Jacobson, MD