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2021 Industry Expert Predictions for Elders, Caregiving in Wake of COVID-19

Like so many in our community of caregivers, we are enthusiastically setting our sights on 2021. We’re lining the path ahead with hope. Hope for much-needed healing, continued innovation, and a massive, collective empathetic response to people giving and receiving care. We looked to some of the brightest and best of the “friends and family” of Aloe Care for a glimpse into the coming months. Here’s what they had to say:

"The best examination room is where the patient lives, not where the doctor works. And, any variant of the following: telemedicine is to healthcare as Amazon is to shopping; as Netflix is to the movie theater, and as on-line banking is to your local bank.”

—Jay H. Sanders, M.D., CEO, The Global Telemedicine Group, Professor of Medicine (Adjunct), Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Founder and President Emeritus, American Telemedicine Association, member of the Aloe Care Advisory Board

“While 2020 turned the world upside down, it also revealed the massive gaps and deficits that exist in caregiving and senior care. I think 2021 will be the Year of the Caregiver as companies, the senior care industry, and leading service organizations come to terms with how to best serve these underpaid and undervalued everyday heroes."

—Amie Clark, The Senior List

"After a year highlighted by the devastating impact of COVID-19, vaccinations and other measures bring us hope to combat the virus in 2021. However, it is also important that we pay attention to the unintended consequences of COVID. As we safely social distance to decrease exposure risk, we must find ways to intervene and deal with the social isolation and loneliness caused by the lack of connection. I expect the next decade to bring innovations in business and healthcare to help us rebuild our community of connections and address the loneliness epidemic."

—Donato Tramuto, Author, Chairman and Founder of Health eVillages

“Aging-in-place will continue to gain traction. Remote patient monitoring, personal emergency response technology, and other health matters will be addressed in-home. Health Insurance companies will redouble efforts to advance digital care management, using data to prevent acute health episodes. Covid-19 will accelerate the digital adoption of remote patient care and communication. Masks will be required or desired in many public forums for much of 2021. Sadly, social distancing may be here to stay.”  

—Bob Hurley, Executive Advisor in Digital Health, eHealth; member of the Aloe Care Health Advisory Board

“COVID has demonstrated the power of telehealth to support health care workers, the older population and caregivers. It is amazing to see the adoption rate grow amongst all ages and the importance it addresses for the safety and independence of vulnerable populations. I expect innovative concepts to grow and expand in 2021 that will further  empower providers and the population as a whole to live more healthy and fulfilling lives.”

—Vicki Shepard, Health and Aging Expert, co-founder of WBL: Women Leading Healthcare

“The last several months have given every one of us a dose of radical empathy for people who are isolated and alone. My profound hope is that this translates into better care for one another, especially older adults, in 2021 and beyond. And as our population ages overall (more than 10,000 of us reach 65 every day), I hope too that we collectively evolve beyond so many limiting, false, and often unconscious preconceptions about aging. This starts with products that are more thoughtfully — and more beautifully — designed, and extends right through to our words and everyday interactions.”

—Ray Spoljaric, CEO and Co-Founder, Aloe Care Health

“In 2021, older adults will continue to rely on simple technology to interact with friends and family, as well as to function independently. Normalcy will take time to resume, and senior communities need to use home devices to function in society. Online shopping, online healthcare, online banking, and virtual communication will be major components of the lives of seniors as we go into 2021.”

—Jordan Mittler, Director and Founder of Mittler Senior Technology. Jordan leads an inspiring group of teens teaching elders how to use technology to improve communication and daily activities.

Overall, a ‘Better Year Ahead’ forecasted by this esteemed list. Read the full story HERE.  Onward and upward!

Susan Lietz

Chief Editor at Aloe Care

Writer, caregiver, dog-mom.

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