Did you know home care is the fastest-growing sector of the health care industry today? This comes as no surprise for experts in the field as people are continually looking for professional and compassionate care for their aging loved ones. In fact, more than 10,000 people are turning 65 each day. According to the United States Census Bureau, the number of adults who turned 65 or older grew from 3.1 million in 1900 to 35 million in 2000. Just 2 years ago, in 2018, the U.S. reported more than 56 million people age 65 or older.
When you think about the population, that number is staggering. However, that’s only part of the reason why home care is thriving. Below are four specific reasons why the industry is steadily and consistently growing.
- Healthcare Industry Job Growth
According to Homecare Magazine, job growth in the health care sector has increased a full percentage point faster than employment in the rest of the economy. More than 10% of all jobs in the U.S. are in the health care sector. From residential to ambulatory and nursing care to hospitals, all parts of the health care field are seeing above-average growth. Still, home care leads the pack with a 4% employment growth from March 2018 to March 2019. This added more than 64,000 jobs to the employment market.
Why the significant growth of home care jobs? The simple answer is people are just living longer. Studies have estimated that by 2030, we may see a shortage of 100,000 caregivers for our elderly population. Additionally, the next decade will see the creation of millions of new home care jobs globally due to the constant demand for caregivers.
- Affordability of Home Care
For years, home care was thought to be too expensive for the average person. Now, people realize that home care is a much more affordable option when they need assistance for themselves or an aging loved one. This is especially true when the cost of home care (an average price of $21,000 annually) is compared to the cost of assisted living facilities (an average cost of $41,000 annually).
Additionally, Medicare has helped make home care an option for seniors in America and subsequently aided exponential industry growth. There is a rising population of individuals turning 65 who are becoming Medicare-eligible, which means they have (or will have) health insurance coverage that includes home healthcare benefits.
Services that are covered by Medicare’s home health benefit include:
- Intermittent skilled nursing care
- Care provided by a home health aide
- Convenience of Home Care
Convenient care is a huge factor in why our industry is rapidly growing. Especially in today’s health climate, many people would rather have a skilled professional see their aging loved one at home than risk them venturing outside and contracting a life-threatening illness. The home care industry has made it possible for people to receive expert care and assistance in the comfort of their homes.
- Home Health Technology
Technology has played a significant role in the home care industry’s growth, specifically in creating automated intelligence to benefit both the caregiver and the aging individual. Investment in technology has allowed in-home caregivers to observe, monitor, and report health conditions.
Some telehealth devices and technology include:
- Telemedicine: This telehealth option allows home health seniors to connect with health care providers for remote diagnosis and monitoring.
- Remote monitoring: Remote monitoring devices can help manage a range of medical and health conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, and congestive heart failure.
- Medical safety and security devices: Many of these devices use sensors and cloud-based technology to monitor activity and notify caregivers of abnormal behavior.
When it comes to technology, there is likely always going to be a “risk versus reward” mindset. However, it seems pretty clear that the quality, cost benefit, and growth of the industry are far outweighing potential technology risks.
With the population growing and people living longer, the need for home care services is more essential than it has ever been. The industry needs more compassionate and skilled people to enter the home care field and bridge the gap between caregiver availability and seniors 65 or older.
You can get started today with a franchise opportunity with Homewatch CareGivers. We’re more than a set of locations that care for aging adults. We’re a family that genuinely values the people we support and are proud of the work we do. Contact us today to find out how you can join our network of owners.