In most senior living communities, there are two sets of customers: the resident and the family. Both customer groups are heavily involved in the decision making process for choosing the senior care community, and both the resident and the family members need to be engaged and supported throughout the time the resident lives in the senior care community. Often, disengaged or dissatisfied family members can lead to move-outs just as much as, if not more, than an upset resident.
To keep the back door closed and the bottom line increasing, most senior care executives are turning towards senior care solutions that keep families and residents engaged and informed. The more educated and “in the loop” family members and residents feel, the less room there is for miscommunication or misunderstandings that can lead to dissatisfaction. Further, the more family members and residents feel safe and cared for at a community, the better chance the resident will move into the community and age in place for as long as possible.
When looking at what senior care solutions may work at a given community, executives and clinicians should focus on finding ways to make the family and the residents feel safe and cared for. Here are a few senior care solutions that are providing the peace of mind that families and residents need.
Residents can feel safer when senior care communities are equipped with health monitoring technology that provides clinicians with reports on everything from fall risks to early illness detection. Sensors can be put in resident apartments in order to give a second pair of eyes on residents when they are not actively engaging with care personnel. These sensors use artificial intelligence and are discreet, providing alerts if residents are at risk for bedsores, falls, or other medical issues.
These health monitoring technology senior solutions not only give residents peace of mind, but also provide confidence to family members who are miles away. Knowing that their loved one is being watched by staff, and by technology, calms anxiety or worry.
Access to mHealth Applications
Having a way to communicate with their primary physician is an added bonus for residents and family members. Senior care communities that have a platform to handle mHealth applications have a competitive advantage for harnessing this increasingly technologically savvy population. Even if residents or family members do not currently use mHealth apps to communicate with doctors or specialists, senior care communities can offer classes to show the benefits of this service, as well as to demonstrate how to use mHealth apps on the community’s network.
Social Media Engagement
In an era of Facebook and Instagram, most family members are already connected through social media. In fact, seniors over the age of 65 are setting up their own Facebook pages at a rate higher than other demographics. Senior care communities are taking time to set up community Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts to keep both residents and family members up to date on events and other community information. But the social media potential doesn’t stop there.
Senior care communities are using social media to give residents a place to engage with their peers and with the greater community. Family members are able to use video conferencing to become an active part of care plan meetings. Residents feel more connected to life outside of the senior care community, while family members feel more connected with what is happening inside of the senior care community. Social media provides the opportunity for each customer to feel connected and engaged, which can lead to higher satisfaction and communication.
What senior care solutions have you found to work the best in your community?