Everyday 10,000 Americans celebrate their 50th Birthday. By the year 2030 over 70 million Americans will be senior citizens. As this wave of seniors marches forward we need to prepare for this transition. By planning ahead we can ensure that we are capable of offering quality care to our thoroughbred Americans.
Don’t expect our government to be prepared for this. Although they are making changes, this wave is so massive and affects so many different areas of our society that we will not be ready. All Americans will be affected by this situation. It will be up to each and every one of us to assist our nation during this transformation.
Businesses and individuals who start planning and make changes now will also benefit during this period. The cost to care for our seniors will be tremendous reaching in the billions. Some changes and different ways we can adapt to the future are below.
Hospitals will need to hire valet or parking attendants because of the large numbers of seniors needing assistance walking. Seniors and their caregivers will not be able to walk across long parking lots. An alternative would be to build high-rise parking garages attached to the hospital.
Nurses will be offered fast track career opportunities and larger responsibilities. To prepare now they should take American History classes as well as business courses. The history classes will enable them to communicate and understand the elders better. A more effective method to relate better with seniors would be to complete their family history. The business courses will assist them in offering congregate care to communities or starting their own business.
Contractors and homeowners need to start building or installing elevators in two-story homes. There are medical tax incentives that dramatically reduce the cost to install them in homes. When they design bathrooms they should allow space for dual sinks and plenty of room in the event of the need for wheel chair accessibility. They also need to get in the habit of installing wider doors or even sliding doors that are concealed within walls for this same reason. Using larger address numbers would assist emergency vehicles. Handicap accessible options could turn out to be good selling points in the future. Energy efficient and secure homes should be mandatory versus optional.
Currently there are fewer than 7000 geriatric doctors across our nation. With 70 million baby boomers headed our way it may be a good idea for doctors to start shifting to this area. Veterans of war do not appreciate going to the V.A. hospital and always being treated by a doctor from another country. Politically correct or not, they have their own mind and beliefs and we will have to adopt to it.
Website owners offering a selection of categories need to offer the section of elder or senior care to the family category. There will need to be products developed in this area comparable to the needs of our citizens. You may want to increase the size of your fonts so everybody has equal access to the content.
Businesses and community leaders need to start placing adult and childcare facilities in the same building and possibly let these generations mingle together periodically. The young children need the love and wisdom the seniors have to offer. This will also be convenient to the multi-generation families and allow them to proceed with their career.
This is just a few of the many changes that we can start right now to assist our great nation. By planning ahead and working together we can handle any situation. There is opportunity around every corner.