Improved Caregiving Through Enhanced Communities Supported by High-Tech Systems

Communities, government and the public and private sectors will need to make sweeping changes to accommodate older Americans’ desire to remain in their homes, according to “The MetLife Report on Aging in Place 2.0: Rethinking Solutions to the Home Care Challenge.” Multiple studies the past 10 years have shown that most Americans over age 45 prefer to remain in their own homes, even when assistance with activities of daily living is necessary. The MetLife report focuses on the age 65+ population, now 13% of the U.S. population. It says the age 85+ population, at greatest risk of being disabled, is expected to grow to 8.7 million people in 2030 from 4.3 million in 2000.

In the coming years adjustments will need to include homes in which residential design, health care services and new monitoring technologies (see inset) are combined with comprehensive community care services to form a dynamic and efficient home health management system. Referred to as AiP2.0, this new Aging in Place blueprint envisions a more efficient use of available resources and an enhanced and better coordinated service delivery mechanism, while also leading to the creation of business opportunities for the private sector.

“Wherever older individuals live, whether in their own homes or in a care facility, the setting may be inefficient for many people, since a person’s need for care fluctuates as medical conditions come and go, often resulting in the need to move back and forth between multiple care settings,” said Sandra Timmermann, Ed.D., director of the MetLife Mature Market Institute. “A new integration of care services, home design and technology, as outlined in AiP2.0, will likely lead to less stress for older adults and their caregivers, supporting a better quality of life for all of them.”

The report points to new business opportunities in the Aging in Place market in such areas as health care, meals, supplies and transportation that will be integrated with public sector services. Another category will be “assistive technology” to connect homes with provider networks featuring monitoring and data transmission.

The report lists five steps to developing AiP2.0: 1) Homes prepared for Aging in Place through individual investment, subsidies and incentives, 2) Investment in businesses that will connect market sectors to improved service delivery, 3) Development of care management, social interaction, wellness and transportation systems, 4) Care management designed to dispatch services when needed, and 5) Care delivery models to make better use of available, paid caregiver resources to meet the needs of individuals in the community.

In addition to improving the quality of life for older Americans, an AiP2.0 system has the potential for numerous cost savings and benefits, including:

  • Support and stress reduction for family caregivers
  • Employment opportunities in the caregiving arena to attract individuals to the field
  • Better application and efficient use of resources
  • Acute-care cost reduction through better chronic care self-management
  • Fewer injuries and illnesses
  • Reduction of redundant services

“The MetLife Report on Aging in Place 2.0: Rethinking Solutions to the Home Care Challenge” was prepared in conjunction with Louis Tenenbaum, an industry expert and consultant focused on Universal Design and Aging in Place

“The MetLife Report on Aging in Place 2.0: Rethinking Solutions to the Home Care Challenge” can be downloaded from It can also be ordered through Contact Us or by writing to: MetLife Mature Market Institute, 57 Greens Farms Road, Westport, CT 06880.

The MetLife Mature Market Institute®
Established in 1997, the Mature Market Institute (MMI) is MetLife’s research organization and a recognized thought leader on the multi-dimensional and multi-generational issues of aging and longevity. MMI’s groundbreaking research, gerontology expertise, national partnerships, and educational materials work to expand the knowledge and choices for those in, approaching, or caring for those in the mature market.

MMI supports MetLife’s long-standing commitment to identifying emerging issues and innovative solutions for the challenges of life. MetLife, Inc. (NYSE: MET), through its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading provider of insurance, employee benefits and financial services with operations throughout the United States and the Latin American, Europe and Asia Pacific regions.

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