Skip to content Skip to navigation

Survey: Seniors Want to Access Their Healthcare Online

March 3, 2015
by Rajiv Leventhal
| Reprints

There is a growing demand among tech-savvy seniors who want to access healthcare services from home, but the majority of them don’t think that today’s technology is sufficient enough to do so, according to a new survey from the New York-based research firm, Accenture.

The survey, of nearly 11,000 adults across 10 countries, also showed seniors who place a higher priority on technology are more likely to proactively manage their health. For example, most seniors (75 percent) who value technology are active in tracking their weight digitally, compared to 43 percent of those who do not. Similarly, half of tech-savvy seniors are actively monitoring their cholesterol, compared to 31 percent of those who do not value technology.

The data further indicates that seniors are interested in accessing a number of digital technology applications they can use to better manage their healthcare, including:

  • Self-care: More than two-in-three seniors prefer to use self-care technology to independently manage their health.
  • Wearables: More than three-in-five seniors are willing to wear a health-monitoring device to track vital signs, such as heart rate and blood pressure.
  • Online communities: Three-in-five seniors are somewhat or very likely to turn to online communities, such as Patient Like Me, for reactions to a doctor’s recommendation before acting on it.
  • Navigating healthcare: A third of seniors would prefer to work with a patient navigator to manage their healthcare. Last year, $384 million was invested in solutions, like patient navigators, for care navigation.
  • Health record management: A quarter of seniors regularly use electronic health records (EHRs) for managing their health, such as accessing lab results (57 percent), and projections by Accenture suggest it will grow to 42 percent in five years, as consumer-facing tools increase.

“Just as seniors are turning to digital tools for banking, shopping, entertainment and communications, they also expect to handle certain aspects of their healthcare services online,” Kaveh Safavi M.D., global managing director of Accenture’s health business, said in a statement. “What this means for healthcare systems is that they need to consider the role that digital technology can play in making healthcare more convenient for patients of all ages at every touch point.”



EHNAC and HITRUST Combine HIPAA Security Criteria, CSF Framework

The Electronic Healthcare Network Accreditation Commission (EHNAC) and the Health Information Trust Alliance (HITRUST) announced plans to streamline their accreditation and certification programs.

Halamka on MACRA Final Rule: “CMS is Listening and I Thank Them”

Health IT notable expert John Halamka, M.D., CIO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, recently weighed in on the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) final rule.

Texas Patient Care Clinic Hit with Ransomware Attack

Grand Prairie, Texas-based Rainbow Children's Clinic was the victim of a ransomware attack on its IT systems in August, affecting more than 33,000 patients, according to multiple news media reports this week.

Healthcare Organizations Again Go to Bat for AHRQ

Healthcare organizations are once again urging U.S. Senate and House leaders to protect the Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) from more budget cuts for 2017.

ONC Pilot Projects Focus on Using, Sharing Patient-Generated Health Data

Accenture Federal Services (AFS) has announced two pilot demonstrations with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) to determine how patient-generated health data can be used by care teams and researchers.

Is it Unethical to Identify Patients as “Frequent Flyers” in Health IT Systems?

Several researchers from the University of Pennsylvania addressed the ethics of behavioral health IT as it relates to “frequent flyer” icons and the potential for implicit bias in an article published in JAMA.