Aging 2.0’s Grand Challenges.

August 27, 2023

Aging 2.0’s Grand Challenges.

May 29, 2023

Global aging and technology innovation are each occurring at an unprecedented rate. The intersection of these two global macro trends creates significant need and opportunity for new products and services to transform and tech-enable the aging experience.

Aging2.0's Grand Challenges is a global initiative to drive collaboration around the biggest challenges and opportunities in aging. These eight topics are the result of seven years of bottom-up and top-down dialogue with stakeholders from across Aging2.0’s interdisciplinary, intergenerational and international community of older adults, senior care providers, thought leaders and entrepreneurs.

  1. Engagement and Purpose - Outdated social norms have resulted in isolated and marginalized older adults. Helping older adults get and stay meaningfully engaged is critical for their health and the health of our communities. New and creative ways are needed to not only tap into their wisdom but also to provide opportunities for lifelong learning and meaningful engagement.
  2. Financial Wellness - People are living longer and traditional models of work and retirement have not kept pace. New opportunities for later life employment, new models for planning and financing care and better ways to prevent scams and fraud are needed.
  3. Mobility and Movement - Everyday objects and surroundings often become obstacles to movement, safety, independence and socializing. Remaining safe and mobile are top priorities for older adults. There is a need for products, programs and services that enable people to maximize their safety, fitness, independence and mobility as they age.
  4. Daily Living and Lifestyle – Most older adults state a preference to “age in place,” yet one-third of people over age 65 need assistance with at least one activity of daily living. Products and services are needed to help support not only older adults’ basic daily activities but also to foster and support their ability to thrive.
  5. Caregiving - Family caregivers—who are often juggling other family and work responsibilities and living remote from the care recipient—need better support, training, resources and tools to help them take care of their loved ones and themselves. On the professional side, staff shortages and quality concerns loom large, so new solutions are needed to help attract, train, develop and leverage scarce human capital.
  6. Care Coordination - The healthcare journey can be particularly complex and fragmented for older adults. Families and providers need new tools and care models to support care transitions, clinical collaboration, medication management, etc.
  7. Brain Health - Alzheimer’s Disease is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States and is projected to cost $1.1 trillion by 2050. While there remains no cure for Alzheimer’s Disease, better tools and services are needed to increase awareness, develop tools for early prediction and diagnosis, optimize cognitive fitness, slow cognitive decline and support caregivers.
  8. End of Life - Death is inevitable, but that doesn’t seem to make it any easier to talk about or prepare for. As a result, 25 percent of the Medicare budget is spent on the last year of life and many people still do not die where or how they want. Families and providers need help navigating end of life options, having the difficult conversations and ensuring that end of life wishes are met.

We invite everyone to join our global movement to address these challenges by joining an Aging2.0 chapter. To become even further acquainted, join us at Aging2.0’s global OPTIMIZE conference this Sept. 27 and 28 in Louisville, Ky. OPTIMIZE is the premier conference for attendees in the aging innovation space, spotlighting industry leaders embracing new models of care, connecting innovators and investors and highlighting cutting-edge technologies from around the world. MEA’s own founder Chip Conley will be giving a keynote talk at the conference. Learn more and register at aging2.com/optimize.

Caitlin Greenwell is the Director of Marketing and Communications for Aging2.0. A Kentucky native, Greenwell has more than 12 years of experience in public relations in multiple sectors, including healthcare and higher education

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