July 6, 2010 · Leave a comment
Industry Insights from Paul Meade, M. Sc, MPH
One word that optimally summarizes long-term care in the United States is fragmentation. Like a microcosm of the overall fragmented healthcare system in the U.S., long-term care suffers from similarly fragmented clinical care, living care, and financing. As the population ages and Baby Boomers retire and take on a host of chronic illnesses, the problems of long-term care need to be solved fairly quickly. And who better to fix the long-term care fragmentation than the “screenagers?” What’s a screenager? Read on.
While the Baby Boomers did not create a fragmented healthcare delivery system, they certainly contributed to its broader and deeper fragmentation. They are a generation that demands instant gratification, has high expectations, and suffers from an entitlement mentality. As children of the Depression generation, they were given everything their parents were denied growing up; thus, they began to expect more. Baby Boomers will not tolerate growing old and not having the best of everything–which, for this discussion, includes long-term care. While the Baby Boomers are too impatient to wait for the fragmentation of the long-term care system to integrate itself, they are certainly too busy to do it themselves.
So, who will come to their rescue? Appropriately, the saviors of the Baby Boomers are the generations that follow them– Generations X and Y–or, as ... read more »