Kids these days might think they can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but research says that the 55+ generation is using technology as seamlessly as the rest of us. According to AARP, 76 percent of adults over the age of 50 own a desktop, laptop or tablet. Nine in 10 adults in the same age group own a mobile device and 75 percent own a smartphone. While new technology, like fitness watches and pedometers, have a lower adoption rate, the numbers are growing each year.
Technology allows older adults to maintain their independence, communicate with family, access movies, books and news, and can help track bank accounts, appointments and important dates. According to AARP, 55 percent of those age 50 or older, who own a computer or tablet, are accessing information about health and fitness information.
Digital technology like the Internet, tracking pedometers, mobile apps and various personal devices, have expanded the health and fitness world to promote a longer and healthier lifestyle. Here are a few ways technology and health care can help these tech-savvy seniors:
- Virtual doctor visits and online scheduling: Mobile applications like BayCareAnywhere and HealthNav are helping people take charge of their medical care. If you're feeling under the weather or cut yourself, you can utilize these apps to have a telemedicine visit, schedule an urgent care appointment, find your closest emergency room or call to schedule an appointment with your doctor.
- Patient portal: A website that houses your recent laboratory numbers and X-rays is easily accessible for BayCare patients. Talk to your doctor’s office about starting an account on the BayCare Patient Portal.
- Health care mobile apps: There are several mobile apps available that can help track your daily walks, refill prescriptions, and keep a record of doctor’s names and phone numbers. Search the mobile app store to find one that works best for you.
- Personal Emergency Response Systems: A medical alert system like CareLink Numera Innovation Medical Alert System utilizes GPS technology, hands-free, two-way communication, can be used in the shower or tub or even on when you’re on an afternoon walk. This easy-to-use technology works with an independent lifestyle.