Family caregivers show great interest in mobile technologies

More than two-thirds of family caregivers who have used some form of technology to help them with caregiving say that web-based and mobile technologies designed to facilitate caregiving would be helpful to them, according to a new survey from the National Alliance for Caregiving and UnitedHealthcare.

All of the caregivers who participated in the survey indicated that they have used the Internet or other related technologies to help them provide care. Not surprisingly, searching the Internet for information or support related to the caregiving was cited most often (70 percent of survey respondents).

Nearly half of the survey respondents have used an electronic organizer or calendar to help them with caregiving (47 percent), and 11 percent have participated in a caregiving-related blog or online discussion, according to the survey findings, which were released last week at the International Consumer Electronics Show Silvers Summit in Las Vegas.

The caregivers surveyed also appeared to be most receptive to technologies that helped them to deliver, monitor, track, or coordinate their loved one's healthcare. Of the 12 technologies in the survey, the three that appeared to have greatest potential for acceptance and usage by caregivers fall into those categories.

For personal health record tracking, 77 percent of caregivers reported that a website or computer software would help them keep track of their care recipients' personal health records. For a caregiving coordination system, 70 percent of caregivers indicated that a shared electronic log for their loved one's doctor appointments and other caregiving needs would be helpful.

For more details:
- see UnitedHealthcare's summary of findings