Andy Warner and Jackie Roche have created a wonderful comic called Graying World that beautifully illustrates many of the issues we face as the world’s population ages. These issues are part of what drives what Inhabitech is trying to do and what keeps me working a lot of hours.
Inhabitech is very pleased to announce that it was accepted into the Aging 2.0 Startup Bootcamp!
This Bootcamp brings together founders from all over the work to learn from and connect with other entrepreneurs, senior care executives, investors, and seniors themselves. The purpose is to equip startup founders with the insights and relationships needed to succeed in the aging space.
The Bootcamp is part of OPTIMIZE, Aging2.0’s conference that showcases the intersection of innovation and aging. I went to the TechExpo last year and learned an incredible amount about the aging space and companies who are innovating in that space.
OPTIMIZE is taking place in San Francisco October 12-14, 2016.
The Minnesota VA has created a wheelchair that can help people stand. They are looking to market this soon. It will be awesome for those who are wheelchair-bound be mobile in new ways. It will also help maintain bone density as it will provide the opportunity to put bones in the arm under stress as the chair is put into the vertical position. Bones not put under stress lose density and is one of the reasons why we should include some sort of resistance training as we age.
Would you like to help change the experience of aging both for elders and for family and friend caregivers? Are you currently caring for a loved one or friend as they age? Have you cared for someone who has passed? Then Inhabitech is looking for you!
Inhabitech’s vision is to empower people to age gracefully and safely at home. Its mission is to enhance an elder’s ability to age in place and to support their network of caregivers through relevant, thoughtful and intuitive high tech systems. To do this, we need your help!
Inhabitech is looking to interview caregivers, either as part of focus groups or one on one to discover the challenges they face with the person they care for. This research will then be used to create products that will meet caregiver’s actual needs rather than what we imagine those needs are. We are looking to interview caregivers in the Greater Denver Area, including up to Loveland and Fort Collins.
In countries all over the world, the percentage of elderly people is growing at a more rapid rate compared to other age groups. This is sometimes called the “Silver Tsunami”, though not everyone is completely comfortable with this term (see the NPR report http://www.npr.org/2014/05/19/313133555/silver-tsunami-and-other-terms-that-can-irk-the-over-65-set). In their minds, tsunamis strike without warning and suck everything out to sea, as if our elders are going to suck up all of our resources. True, we know this demographic shift is happening, so we have plenty of warning. But if you think about the number of people who will need some sort of assistance as they age and how expensive medical care is in this country, unless we think carefully and plan appropriately, we are going to have a very large bill due. According to a report from the National Center for Policy Analysis (http://healthblog.ncpa.org/1-percent-of-people-account-for-23-percent-of-medical-spending/), 1% of people needing medical care account for 23% of all medical spending. 5% account for 50%. Though some of us are living longer and healthier lives, not all of us are, and eventually we will all need medical care as we age. 92% of all older Americans have at least 1 chronic disease, 77% have at least 2. Many have 4 or more. For more on this, see https://www.ncoa.org/news/resources-for-reporters/get-the-facts/healthy-aging-facts/. These chronic conditions need medical care and as the number of people needing medical care goes up, so will the overall expenditures.
In the US, the demographic shift is happening because of the Baby Boom generation, which I am the tail end of. Though many people have probably heard something on the news about it, probably many don’t have a good idea of the actual numbers.
The following set of statistics were compiled by Allen S. Teel, MD and published in his 2011 book Alone and Invisible No More.
In 2008, 35 million Americans were over age 65.
By 2020, this figure will grow to 55 million.
By 2030, 85 million Americans will be over 65.
The fastest growing segment of the population is those over 85.
Over 4 million are over 85 now.
By 2050 an estimated 21 million will be over 85.
There will be 1 million Americans over age 100 by 2050.
In 1943, the United States had 43 working people for each retiree. By 2015 it will be 2.
Inhabitech is searching for a Co-Founder who can help do the highly important research with elders and their caregivers that will help determine its Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and then help make that MVP a reality.