On January 1st, 2011, the first members of the Baby Boomer generation celebrated their 65th birthday, and every single day through the end of 2029, approximately ten thousand more will join them. In fact, it’s estimated that 20% of the population will be ages 65 and older by 2029.
One of the largest issues that face the aging baby boomer population is their risk of injury. According to a report by the Center for Disease Control, one-third of all older adults (ages 65 and older) fall every year, and falls are now the primary cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries in older adults.
The CDC estimates 20-30% of people who fall will suffer moderate to severe injuries, including lacerations, hip fractures and head trauma. Even when a physical injury is not present, up to 47% of individuals who fall find they cannot get up again without assistance.
The amount of time a person spends immobile can adversely affect their health in the form of dehydration, pressure sores, muscle cell breakdown, and more.
The fear of repeat falls is a real one. An older adult who suffers a fall is two to three times more likely to fall again. The emotional distress can be destructive, even if there is no physical damage. A fear of falling can send an older adult into a destructive cycle of limiting their fitness and activities, thus increasing their risk of falling again.
As the Baby Boomer generation ages and older adults become an increasingly larger percentage of the general population, the demand for Personal Emergency Response Service devices, both traditional and mobile, will increase as well. The benefits of a PERS device are straightforward. First, immediate response after a fall has been shown to decrease the need for hospitalization up to 26%, and decrease fatalities by up to 80%. Second, PERS devices offer older adults the chance to stay safe in their home and keep their independence longer, which also saves them money from costly assisted living and nursing homes.
Adding PERS options to your offerings is a great opportunity for increased RMR. The market for these products is expected to continue growing, especially as their abilities expand with technological advances and mobile access. Using the technology of the UniversalConnector, Manitou is integrated with multiple PERS, mPERS, and GPS devices and new devices can easily be added. Be prepared to educate potential customers about the benefits of a monitored PERS device!