More senior citizens are turning towards the Internet seeking information about medical treatments, products, services and other important information.
Baby boomers are accessing the web for this type of information. According to research from the PEW Internet and American Life Project nearly half of seniors go online. As of April 2012 adults 65 and over are using the Internet or sending email.
The Pikes Peak Area of Council of Governments was hearing feedback from seniors that they were having trouble finding reliable information on the Internet. This was of concern to the PPACG so they decided to do something about that. On Oct. 17 they launched a model program called the Network of Care for Seniors and Adults with Disabilities. Colorado is one of four states to pilot this program.
The Network of Care website gives seniors access to local services for Alzheimer's, caregiver support, housing and transportation. They can find articles in the healthcare library; obtain Rx assistance, find support groups and have access to a database of more than 21,000 products. Seniors can even store important information in the personal health record folders. The user can even change the language on the website.
“They've made every attempt to make it as easy as possible,” Guy Dutra-Silveira, director of PPACG's aging program, said. “It's user friendly.”
Dallas Jamison, senior policy and communications advisor for PPACG, said the web can be overwhelming to seniors but the information that Network Care provides is credible and customized to the Pikes Peak Region. The information is regularly verified.
PPACG hosted a launch party for the website on Oct. 17 with a complete hands-on demonstration. Jamison several seniors were in attendance.
“We've gotten such great feedback from people,” Jamison said.
“It's truly an amazing service,” Dutra-Silveira added.
Dutra-Silveira is hoping the website is a success with local seniors. Boulder went live with the website three years ago and Denver started in one year ago. Boulder receives approximately four million hits a quarter on their Network of Care site.
To access the website go to http://pikespeak.co.networkofcare.org/aging/.