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Supporting Those Who Care for Our Aging Population

January 11, 2017 | Long Term Care

The aging of the American population is dramatically altering the composition of our country, not just today, but for the foreseeable future. About 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 every day; of these, a quarter of today’s 65-year-olds are projected to live past 901, and estimates indicate that by the year 2030, the U.S. will be home to 71 million people over age 65.

An Increased Need for Caregivers

The rising 65-plus population also brings increased demand for services and the infrastructure that supports them.

These services are provided by a diverse network of caregivers that includes spouses, children and other family members. In addition, skilled nursing facilities, home health agencies, and adult day care centers provide support to a collective 8.3 million older Americans annually. And with 75 percent of older adults saying that they intend to live in their current homes for the rest of their lives, it’s clear that having access to in-home services will be more important than ever.

Challenges Come with Chronic Conditions

As the demands on their time and resources continue to grow, professional and unpaid caregivers alike will need additional support to overcome day-to-day challenges in managing health care for the aging American population.

Nearly 70 percent of caregivers report playing an active role in monitoring their senior care recipient’s health conditions, regularly communicating with health care professionals so care and treatment can be adjusted as needed. But those who care for seniors with chronic conditions often find the complexity difficult to manage, with nearly a quarter reporting challenges with coordination of care.

Pharmacists Can Serve an Important Role

Pharmacists are among the most accessible members of any patient’s health care team, and can help reduce complexity for caregivers by providing a variety of services and support, such as health and wellness testing, assistance in managing chronic diseases, medication management, and administering immunizations.

Pharmacists can also help by identifying potential barriers to medication adherence and offering solutions to help ensure their senior care recipients follow their medication regimens, which can help reduce costs to the health system.

CVS Health Tools and Services

As the nation’s largest pharmacy innovation company, we offer a number of tools and services that can help connect the dots in the health care system for older Americans and their caregivers, including:

  • ScriptSync, a free support tool that enables patients and caregivers with multiple maintenance medications to pick up prescriptions at the same time in one monthly CVS Pharmacy visit.

  • Specialty Connect, which provides any patient the option to bring their specialty prescriptions to any CVS Pharmacy. Patients receive insurance guidance and 24/7 clinical support by phone from a team of specialty pharmacy experts.

  • Pharmacy Advisor, a program that engages CVS Caremark plan members who are diagnosed with chronic conditions either face-to-face when they choose to fill prescriptions at CVS Pharmacy or by phone when members choose mail service pharmacy.

  • Omnicare, a CVS Health subsidiary that extends pharmacy services to seniors in long-term care facilities, providing medication reconciliation servies that can help reduce readmission rates and improve outcomes.

To learn more about our health care solutions to meet Americans’ future needs, visit our Health Care Delivery and Innovation information center.