If a senior is concerned about their safety around the yard, in the home or while out shopping, then he or she should consider investing in an activity-based medical alert system. No longer do medical alert devices restrict a senior to their homes, as many are now GPS compatible and even sync to wireless technology such as cell phones.
Additionally, fall detection pendants have longer ranges, so a senior can stay outside in the yard and garden at their leisure. This is a must-have in places where the weather is unpredictable and a senior could be at risk to the elements that are most often associated with falls and spills.
Detroit, Michigan continues to see an overall decrease in the number of folks who call the city home. As of 2016, the Motor City continued to house approximately 670,000 people, which was down from 688,000 in 2013. The primary reason for the downward trend is the economic blight that Detroit has been unable to shake off as a result of the 2008 financial crisis. The number of those aged 65 and older, however, continues to grow as those native to the city age in place. The portion of the population in this demographic was just 11 percent seven years ago but has since grown to over 16 percent.
Access to the additional resources required to support the over-65 crowd is limited by the lack of working-age persons in the Motor City, as well as those leaving for better opportunities elsewhere. Ultimately, the senior segment of Detroit’s populace is only expected to increase to 27 percent by 2050.
Detroit averages a 19-minute door-to-door response time in the metropolitan area. Additionally, a senior can expect to wait approximately 45 minutes for care regarding a broken bone or fracture with an overall discharge wait time of just over 90 minutes. If more long-term care is required, then the senior should expect to wait well over two hours for care. In order to alleviate and lessen some of these wait times, older folks should consider investing in a medical alert system based on their level of activity.
If the senior tends to be away from home for long periods of time, or finds themselves in neighborhoods that are further away from response centers, then a GPS-enabled pendant or mobile app might be a good option. Conversely, if the older adult enjoys time spent at home, there are certainly plenty of options to choose from.
Detroit’s healthcare system boasts a large number of hospitals that are ranked nationally for geriatric care. The University of Michigan is number seven in the nation and has over 15 adult specialties in order to serve the aging populace within and around Motor City. Beaumont Hospital at Royal Oak also received a top rating of 28 and has nine specialties with best-in-class ratings in geriatrics, as well. Both facilities had excellent 30-day survival rates for those patients age 75 and older, as well as high marks for care as provided by nurses, ICU staff and physicians.
Despite the national rise in certain chronic age-related issues, life expectancy continues to rise in Detroit by an average of seven years since 1960, with many seniors living well past 80 years of age. Quality of life in Detroit did not score favorably, however, and came in second to last overall for the United States. The fiscal crisis of 2008 continues to plague the city with still further issues of crime, homelessness and fewer activities on offer than most metropolitan areas. About 41 percent of seniors are currently living alone, which adds to the recommendation of investing in a well-connected medical alert device.
The percentage of older adults that call Detroit home is only expected to grow over the coming decades. The strain on the economy is anticipated to remain quite high, however, as the younger generation of potential workers relocates in order to find better means of income and career opportunities. The state and city have set up a vast number of programs to assist seniors, including adult day care, assistance for the hearing impaired, transportation, education courses, chore services, Meals on Wheels, disease prevention clinics, foster grandparent programs and other plans.
Still, with the strain on the medical system, seniors should look to invest in at-home, mobile or hybrid medical alert systems in order to ensure their safety as the city looks to reclaim its footing and improve long-term economic options for the next generation of Motor City residents.