Age-Friendly Health Systems: How Do We Get There?
As the American population ages, our health care delivery system must embrace significant changes in payment strategies, as well as value-based service provision, to meet the demands of this demographic shift. Health care leaders are clear that without change, the system will suffer destabilizing financial distress, access to needed services will be limited, and the quality of care received by older adults will deteriorate. We will likely experience all of the above unless we continue to shift to new ways of providing and paying for health care.
As a result of the aging demographic doubling and skewing older, the demand for health care services is predicted to rise more than 200 percent. With aging, there is a confluence of physiologic and pathophysiologic changes that require anticipatory planning, for an older person to maintain well-being and function, and for the health care system to respond. Two out of three older adults have multiple chronic conditions. Some older adults are on five or more medications, and that creates further complexity if they have multiple chronic conditions.
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