Report: Boomers will shape m-health technology efforts

Already top consumers of healthcare technology, baby boomers, ages 46 to 64, are poised to not only continue that trend, but to shape it--particularly in the field of mobile healthcare, a new report from the MIT Enterprise Forum Northwest says. The report was created for an MIT Enterprise Forum to be held in Seattle next week. 

"Boomers view tech-enabled health products as a way to foster control and ongoing independence for themselves, especially in light of the rise in incidence in chronic disease with aging, and their desire to reduce costs," the report reads. "Nearly 56 percent of boomers show a high willingness to use in-home health monitoring devices in tandem with the care of their primary physician." 

The report's authors point to the increased use of health apps for smartphones--200 million worldwide--and the aforementioned desire for more personal monitoring as an indication of where things are headed. They also note that technology enablers, like the FCC's National Broadband Plan to bring high-speed web access to underserved areas in the U.S., will make the transition even easier. 

"[W]ith medical personnel and senior care facility bed shortages as well as Alzheimer-afflicted patients staying at home longer along with solutions targeting wellness management, the monitoring and tracking opportunity is ripe for more focus in this area," the authors write. "Given the current low barriers to entry for smartphone applications, the door is open for entrepreneurs with mobile, open source, and social networking expertise." 

To learn more:
- here's the report (.pdf)