San Diego, CA. My parents are nearing 70. Although they don’t always nail the lingo, I’d definitely categorize them as tech-proficient. My mom’s on facebook more than I am and my dad’s always quick with a text response.

They are in the majority. According to Pew Research, 77% of seniors (65+) own smartphones and 71% use the internet every day. Some 81% who use social networking sites say that they socialize with others on a daily or near-daily basis.

And, the future is bright “Although mobile devices, the Internet of Things (IoT), big data, analytics, and cloud-based services permit almost every age group to use technology for better health, perhaps no generation is poised to benefit more than seniors.” InformationWeek

Here are just a few highlights of developments specifically for seniors in the personal emergency response category:

GreatCall offers a waterproof mobile phone that has built-in emergency response capabilities and just announced a fall detection feature that automatically contacts their 5Star emergency operators.

Phillips’ GoSafe is a cellular-enabled pendant device with a button for 2-way communication in case of emergency.

Lively is a home system that includes a hub and activity sensors as well as a safety watch to enable seniors to stay at home longer.

RedPanicButton and TrackerAssist are mobile apps designed to contact loved ones when a simple alert is activated.

Otosense offers apps that translate doorbells, alarms, telephone rings andother sounds into visual cues.

70 is the New 50 is a trend we’re following closely in 2015 (see Consumer Trend #4). And, while we’re sometimes still met with disbelief when we bring the tech-savvy senior stats to the table, perceptions are beginning to change as well.

About the Author:

As Managing Director of Innovation and Insights for Syneos Health Communications, Leigh is responsible for building and scaling a global team of healthcare experts who together help life science leaders better understand the complex lives, influences and expectations of their customers. Specifically, they uncover actionable insights that fuel empathy and creativity; lead co-creation events that let marketers learn from peers, trends, and new possibilities; and help clients identify the most valuable and useful new customer experiences to create.

Leigh has worked with Fortune 1000 companies to craft their digital, mobile, social and CRM strategies for nearly 20 years.She’s worked for category-leading agencies in retail, public affairs, B2B technology, and higher education. Prior to moving to Syneos Health Communications, she held several leadership roles at our largest agency, GSW.  There, she founded an innovation practice fueled by the zeitgeist and spearheaded digital and innovation thinking across the business.

Leigh has taken a special interest in complex healthcare products that can change lives in meaningful ways. She was recently a strategic lead on the 3rd largest launch in pharmaceutical history: Tecfidera. Before that she had keys roles with Eli Lilly Oncology, Abbott Nutrition, Amgen Cardiovascular, and Eli Lilly Diabetes.

A critical part of Leigh’s work is trends and new ideas. Every year, she convenes a group of trend watchers from across our global network to identify the shifts most critical to healthcare marketers. This year, she led over 250 experts to experts to focus on the most important changes in the commercial, consumer, marketing, digital and healthcare landscapes. (See reports at

Leigh is a sought-after writer and speaker. Recognized as one of the most inspiring people in the pharmaceutical industry by PharmaVoice and Top 10 Innovation Catalysts of 2017 by MM&M, Leigh also was recognized  as a Rising Star by the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association (HBA) for her overt passion, industry thought leadership and significant contributions in new business, strategy and mentoring.