We began this series discussing how the second wave of Baby Boomers or the “trailing edge,” will likely change healthcare materially and permanently.
In our last blog, we suggested that this “trailing edge” will change healthcare by being the first generation to take a more active role in their healthcare, be materially more demanding of technology, and more questioning of their caregivers. After all, this is the generation that has witnessed the emergence and mainstreaming of revolutionary technology: the color television, fax machines, pagers, cell phones, the Internet, social media, and the Internet of things (IoT) also known as connected devices.
We tend to associate Millennials with the proliferation of technology; however, all the key technology improvements that we are witnessing today were effectively developed during the life of the trailing edge Baby Boomers (1956 to 1966). We the “trailing-edge” are the technology generation.
Our children, Millennials, have taken to technology and the creation of applications, at a ferocious rate. Few have used, let alone remember, the typewriter; they are more familiar with the computer keyboard introduced while in grade school.
These Millennials are starting to enter the healthcare system en masse. The leading edge of the Millennials today are 37 years old. They don’t function well without technology and as they enter healthcare, along with their parent’s high healthcare consumption years, healthcare is facing an inflection point and technology is the only answer.
We see Millennials beginning to question everything… I suppose you might say that we taught them right! Millennials are used to sharing their profile information across multiple platforms by simply entering a password and clicking a button. For them, filling out a form in longhand is a foreign concept, though we do it at nearly every visit to a physician.
Today, software platforms should be interconnected, and there should be a few barriers for consumer data to move between platforms without having to access and reenter information repeatedly. We have become used to shopping for products and services online, and not only e-commerce platforms of retailers, but also direct retailers like Amazon, eBay and Thumbtack that are exclusively online.
Soon, we believe we will be flocking to providers and healthcare systems that provide the same application of technology that we are accustomed to using in other segments of the economy. In fact, the Millennials will further drive this trend as together we gravitate to those providers and systems that cater to them as a generation. These healthcare providers and systems will be driven by technology in their pricing and integration.
Our understanding of these master trends was a central reason why we built the electronic healthcare platform, PWeR® to cater to the “trailing edge” of Baby Boomers and the Millennials generation soon to follow. We expect this trend to accelerate and it is now inevitable.
– Noel J. Guillama, President