Healthcare organizations must learn to see seniors as the digital consumers they are

People aged over 65 who use digital technology in their daily lives are shattering myths about seniors’ use of ehealth.

According to excerpts from the 2016 Accenture Consumer Survey on Patient Engagement, there are three myths that healthcare organisations need to dismiss the stereotypes and and see seniors as the digital healthcare consumers they are.

Myth 1: Seniors don’t use ehealth—it’s all just irrelevant gizmos and gadgets to themoldman

Reality: When seniors don’t use ehealth, it’s because they perceive their health to be under control, not because they don’t trust it

Myth 2: There is a large digital divide between younger health consumers and seniors

Reality: Just like younger people, seniors connect ehealth to better healthcare experiences

Myth 3: Seniors have zero interest in new ehealth tools and would be overwhelmed by them

Reality: Seniors’ ehealth use is accelerating rapidly, and they are very interested in new options

Among their recommendations, Accenture echoes what we’ve been saying about Lifetime Customer Experience; “Design for the entire ecosystem. Rather than focus on individual touchpoints in seniors’ digital health experiences, healthcare organizations should follow service design principles that consider interactions among the constellation of people, products, places and process that create a great digital experience. This shifts the focus from designing for users and things to designing for the true context of people’s lives.”

I’d go even further.

Healthcare organizations must recognize that there are still a lot of older consumers who are not digitally savvy. Furthermore, patient engagement is not an entirely digital experience. All touch points, both digital and non-digital, need to be reconsidered in view of the physical changes that age brings, we call them the 25 effects of ageing.

Download an explanatory pdf here.