ColumnsExpert Opinion

How Tech Is Opening Myriad Opportunities In Aged Care

Aged Care

Disruptive new technologies like Blockchain, AI, VR are transforming businesses, industries of all sizes and types. Such technologies dominate the discussion about gaining a competitive edge over competitors. Blockchain in particular promises endless possibilities to support lives globally but blockchain enthusiasts tend to focus so much on ‘what’ that they often look over ‘how’ and ‘when’. The important questions are: Is market research applied aptly in the process of innovation? Do development and change share the same scope? When left answered, these questions create a gap between technology and people’s preferences.

Why Blockchain?

The blockchain is neither a panacea nor a single solution. It is a technology searching for the perfect use case. On a global scale, the technology is mostly looked at as a pinnacle of financial transactions. It is integrating remittance, economic data, trust as well as risk-management seamlessly into traditional banking systems. But the technology goes way beyond fintech. Many firms talk about blockchain adoption and implementation; the sad truth is that very few of them genuinely hold intellectual properties in this space. Furthermore, even fewer are accepted and adopted by the general public.

According to Forbes, only 0.5% of the global population is using blockchain today. But the global market for Blockchain is expected to reach $20 billion by 2024. Firms, governments, individuals do not want to miss out and are rushing to adopt the leading technology. And why not. The benefits of embracing the tech are manifold: improved trust, higher efficiency, increased productivity, highly-organized processes, lower operational cost and better business insights to name a few. Despite the acknowledgement and attention, numerous blockchain-based ideas are still beating around the bush.

Like Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence is pulling traditional financial industry apart. It has the potential to reduce 20% costs of financial firms globally. In simple words, some maths, data and software can potentially save $1 trillion by 2030. This future depends on the route taken by AI tech companies. One, they continue working on current work models and add skills just to compete or outsmart competitors. Or, they think about the bigger picture and merge technology to build autonomous decentralized systems and give more power to individuals. The same goes for the future of Blockchain technology as well.

What’s going on in Aged Care?

Technology needs to underpin the aged care industry for better services and care homes for seniors. They have the right to a better life, and it is essential to ensure control, choice and independence of older adults. Rising life expectancy and medical advancements may have given them a longer life but do not guarantee a better life.

Technology can never replace the human touch that stands at the core of aged care. What it can do is integrate compassion, empathy and understanding without being too relentless about it. Blockchain technology can help improve the operational efficiency, increase the capacity of care homes, standardize services, ensure delivery of personalized care & support and reduce the possibility of errors.

Blockchain implementation has the potential to converge current aged care systems and give birth to an era of unprecedented care services. It will provide power to seniors and ensure that they stay independent and in control over the offered support services. Not only this, the otherwise ill-trained careforce will be required to upskill and uptake to remain relevant. More importantly, aged care organizations will no longer be their own boss leading to an increase in consumer choice and control.

The potential for the development and deployment of Blockchain technology in aged care is mindblowing. It is likely to accelerate the growth of aged care in the right direction only if taken as a challenge. There are chances of exponential growth, but it is important to stay grounded. Aged care is all about the betterment of senior citizens, and if blockchain adoption is done in track with this thought, it can open up a myriad of opportunities for all.

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