Brookdale’s Rewiring Aging initiative has the goal of enriching seniors’ lives through technology.
“Simply having technology isn’t what leads to greater life satisfaction for older people,” says Kevin O’Neil, M.D., Brookdale’s chief medical officer and a clinical professor of aging studies at the University of South Florida, Tampa. “Using technology for meaningful social engagement is what counts, and the rewards can be life-altering for many seniors.”
The “Rewiring Aging” survey, supported by Brookdale Senior Living and conducted by Kelton in collaboration with the Stanford Center on Longevity, found that the top reason older adults don’t try new technologies is that they feel overwhelmed by the complexities of various devices and programs, O’Neil says. “This is why we are now moving toward incorporating technology training into our ongoing resident programs,” he adds.
Brookdale also is piloting a program in Chicago with tech support company Geekatoo to help residents with their devices. “Getting older doesn’t keep you from being connected digitally,” says Josh Shulman, senior living programs director for Geekatoo, which offers both in-home and remote tech support. “Brookdale’s research shows technology’s power for enriching seniors’ lives, and we look forward to helping their residents connect and engage with family, friends, and the world around them. We all have a lot to learn from these seniors’ experience and wisdom.”