Planning for future home care demand crucial as over-65 population soars, UMass Medical School expert says

October 18, 2017

By 2050, there will be twice as many people over 65 as there are today, and triple the number over 85, leading to an explosion on demand for home care and other long-term services and supports (LTSS), says Martin Baker, MSc, of UMass Medical School

And as public agencies across the country brace for this projected upsurge in demand for LTSS, they must be able to access a range of key data in a single, data analytics platform.

UMass Medical School’s TrendFinder LTSS is designed to help public agencies and other clients analyze the wide-ranging information the need to project future demand and track performance.

“The aging of the population will have a profound impact on public agencies, payers, managed care organizations and providers,” said Baker, senior director of strategic growth and business development.

Already, LTSS accounts for 30 percent of all Medicaid expenditures each year across the country, or $158 billion.

That number is only expected to grow steadily in the years ahead as the population ages, Baker notes.

In order to accurately project for future LTSS demand, decision makers at public agencies will need access to a range of programmatic, financial and assessment data.

However, accessing the hard numbers and stats agency leaders need is too often spread across different systems.

While claims and eligibility data reside in Medicaid management information systems, key demographic and program utilization and assessment data is typically scattered across, disparate computer systems at other agencies.

For public agency leaders, the ability to work off a single data analytics platform will be crucial.  Armed with such simple, single-point access, decision makers can design policy and program changes, manage and evaluate programs and provider performance, and ultimately determine “what services represent the best value and the best outcomes for the consumers being served,” Baker points out.

However, for public agencies, spending more money on another elaborate IT build out is probably not feasible.

That’s where solutions like UMass Medical School’s TrendFinder LTSS come in, Baker says.

“Public agencies have invested tens of millions of dollars in data management systems, so the idea of investing additional resources to get that data out and create access for reporting and evaluation is really just not tenable,” Baker said.

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