The post-World War II baby boom changed more than just the age dynamic in the United States. The exploding youth population between 1946 and 1964 has had a huge influence on the social climate, economic development, and the workforce over the past seventy-five years. We’ve been closely following the effects of the enormous population of this age bracket – and now that the baby boomers’ retirement is in full swing (and the oldest boomers are starting to enter retirement homes in increasing quantities), it’s more important than ever to adjust our healthcare services to accommodate their changing needs.
Many Americans struggle with the decision to place their parents in a retirement home or assisted living center, and those who don’t often feel the impact of caring for older relatives on their lives. According to a recent survey by the American Psychological Association, adults caring for old and chronically ill relatives report higher levels of stress, poorer health, and an increased risk of engaging in unhealthy behaviors to cope with their stress levels. Over 55% of these home caregivers report feeling overwhelmed. Many simply don’t have the medical knowledge or skills to provide adequate care, and it’s often simply the best choice to place an ill parent in a geriatric care facility with the means to provide good medical care.
These geriatric care facilities are expecting to see an explosion in patient intake in the next several years as the baby boomers begin to pass retirement age and begin requiring more medical attention. As more and more middle-aged and young adults are using the internet to research physicians or hospitals, geriatric care centers will need to pay more attention to how their clients (or, equally likely, their clients’ children) are finding them. Retirement homes, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and hospice care centers will need to pay more attention to retirement home website design and geriatric website design to keep their facility visible online and draw the attention of computer-savvy adults looking to find the best care available in the best location for their relatives. Staying ahead in medical marketing means thinking about the whole picture – it’s important to look beyond who your clients are and consider how they’re coming to you and what the best way to present your practice in a positive light would be.