Aging Baby Boomers and the Growing Demand for Senior Care

Blog Posts  |  23 May 2024

Post World War II baby boom to the current 2020’s senior boom

Throughout the Great Depression and the Second World War, birthrates in the United States remained fairly low. Following World War II, a post war economic boom saw tremendous expansion of infrastructure and growth of neighborhoods, and a rising middle class. With that growth and economic confidence came a post war baby boom in the United States.

The baby boom generation in the US was born between 1946-1964. The oldest are now between the ages of 77/78 and the youngest, 59/60 years old, with nearly two-thirds* of this population already, or about to be, Medicare eligible.

Baby boomers are aging, which correlates with a spike in the need and demand for senior care in the US. The continuous growth has put pressure on an already stressed healthcare system and caused or exacerbated several challenges to providing senior care. These changing circumstances would give the health care community pause under any circumstance (and have been for the last 10 years or so), but now this ongoing spike is occurring as we’re experiencing huge numbers of doctors and medical professionals retiring early or leaving their practices for various reasons post-COVID, creating a potentially even greater supply/demand crisis.

The bottom line is that baby boomers are aging, and the post war baby boom is now a 2020’s senior boom, increasing the demand for senior health care exponentially.

The numbers show vast, continuous growth of the senior population

Key Metrics:

  • Based on 2020 Census data, there are approximately 76.4 million baby boomers living in the U.S. today.1
  • Based on data from the 2020 Census Bureau, the National Center for Health Statistics and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a 2023 Washington Post article reports that:
    • 55.7 million people are 65 and older, an increase of 15.2 million (38 percent) of people 65 and above since 2010, compared with just a 2 percent growth in the under-65 population.
    • The report projects a climb to roughly 80.8 million residents 65 and older by 2040, more than double the number in 2000.
    • It also predicts a doubling of the number of even older residents by 2040, with the count of those 85 and older expected to grow from 6.7 million in 2020 to 14.4 million by 2040. In 2020, there were nearly 105,000 residents 100 or older.2
  • According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s population projections, about 12,000 people will turn 65 every day in the next year. That’s about 4.4 million in 2024 alone. And by 2030, all baby boomers will be 65 or older. This means one in every five Americans will have reached the traditional retirement age.3
  • Medicare Advantage enrollment has increased by 1.7 million beneficiaries since 2023, a March 2024 Chartis report showed. Among 65.9 million Medicare-eligible individuals, 33 million are enrolled in Medicare Advantage for 2024.4
  • By 2030, 20 percent of Americans will be sixty-five or older. By 2030 more people in the United States will be older than age sixty-five than younger than age five.5
  • People aged 65 years and older made up 17 percent of the population in 2020. By 2040, that number is expected to grow to 22 percent.1

Our healthcare system is unprepared for the complexity of caring for a population of older adults vis a vis provider demand, scope, costs and spending.

The growing aging population is driving demand for more medical care, as we face provider shortages. Patients 65 and older account for 34% of the demand for physicians. And by 2034, patients over 65 will account for 42% of the demand.6 An aging population means higher use of health care services and a greater need for family and professional caregivers. Studies have found that population aging is associated with an increase in healthcare spending, with approximately 20% of healthcare spending growth predicted to be attributed to aging by 2025.7 2022 data shows millennials (b 1981-1996), many the children of baby boomers, as the largest population yet - with baby boomers at 68.9 million and millennials at 72.24 million in 2022.8 We will face these same challenges again.

The implications of this population shift increasing the demand for senior healthcare services include provider shortages, shifting disease burden, increased costs and health care spending - as well as expenditures on overall health and long-term care. And increased demand for care slows the delivery process of all healthcare, which will impact users of every age and stage in the healthcare system.9

Challenges ahead - greater need and fewer solutions

There are a lot of challenges ahead for health care providers to meet the increasing demand of senior patient care needs.

  • Staffing shortages and retiring providers
  • Consolidation creates fewer points of contact
  • Reductions in access or personalized care
  • Subpar, unsophisticated use of technology

Not enough providers

Ensuring there are enough providers practicing medicine (that take Medicare) and physician shortages are posing a challenge to providing sufficient senior care. This problem has been growing as baby boomers began to age into Medicare eligibility over 10 years ago, and has worsened significantly since COVID. There’s been a recent provider “bust” with providers retiring early, moving to more remote locations or leaving the practice of medicine throughout the pandemic.

Economic consolidation creates fewer points of contact

Practice buy-outs or consolidation also makes it hard to staff and maintain practices. As there’s been more and more practice consolidation, provider offices are much less accessible for this very high need population. Often with these ownership changes, patients and caregivers have far fewer touchpoints and ways to follow up, when this is needed most.

Less personalized care

Medicare aged patients are some of the greatest consumers of healthcare, and they in-particular cannot only rely on electronic communication for effective healthcare delivery - especially in a crisis. Right now, despite all the technology and advances available - in many cases, healthcare is going backward - sending people to the ER for what could be routine care if they could talk to someone and get a question answered. But removing people, staffing and personal connection from the process is potentially costing more and yielding worse outcomes down the road.

Unsophisticated use of technology

Not every company is using sophisticated software to increase their healthcare organization efficiency. In some cases, consolidation and tech “efficiencies” and automation are eliminating staff and eliminating ways to talk to someone or to have any face-to-face or voice-to-voice, personalized conversations about care (e.g. front desk, scheduling, nurse lines and clinical point people to talk to when the doctor is not available) making it harder for patients and for providers.

The subpar uses of technology, combined with shortages and consolidation, is making any point of contact harder and harder for patients - as the demand for senior care is greatly increasing.

Hope is on the horizon with innovative solutions for remote care management

Remote care management solutions offer innovative, efficient and effective ways to provide high quality, personalized care management using innovative software and staffing solutions.

Technology and Innovation

There has been a lot of Health Tech development and consolidation that has in some cases, led to fewer touchpoints, less interaction, inferior care and inadequate care management. As previously mentioned, consolidation, tech “efficiencies” and automation are eliminating staff and eliminating ways to talk to someone or to have any face-to-face contact or to have personalized conversations about care (e.g. no front desk, scheduling, nurse lines and clinical point people to talk to when the doctor is not available).

Technological advances and automation when well designed and properly used, however, can significantly improve the quality of senior care. Many aspects of telehealth and well designed, rigorous remote care management programs can help improve access to comprehensive care, care personalization and the quality of care provided or available to the growing senior population. It’s also true that well designed and executed automation, EHR integration and high quality software systems can lead to tremendous improvements in health outcomes. The benefits of a rigorous care management program and a well staffed team is maintained by having superior effective, robust technologies that allow for more efficient and effective personalized care.

Staffing and Personalization of remote care

Staffing supports for remote care management programs combined with superior technology allow for expansion and all the benefits of automation, while still considering the importance of direct contact, check-ins and a clinical point person who is reachable - at all, and also reachable by modalities more conducive to the senior population. For example, phone and email and Zoom/telehealth (the latter became more accessible during COVID). Only communicating via MyChart does not work well for getting timely, efficient and effective care for this population - or any population in an urgent situation or health emergency.

Remote care programs that help incorporate dedicated staffing into the program help practices and healthcare organizations relieve overburdened staff, hit the ground running and ensure personalization, automation and connections - as well as ensure more efficient, effective care and improved health outcomes for senior patients using remote care management.

Improved health status impacts the demographics of health care

There are challenges ahead as baby boomers are healthier and living longer, and the last batch of boomers enter senior status and Medicare eligibility over the next several years. People are living longer as advances in healthcare, clinical research and generational attitudes about health and wellness are changing. And there are more and more people in need of solid - high quality, caring, efficient and effective - care management solutions. The demand for innovative solutions is essential - increasing dramatically each year, with each aging baby boomer. The system demands innovative solutions, like Medsien remote care management programs and solutions to address this.

Aging baby boomers + People living longer = innovative solutions are essential

Reimagine innovative remote care management, with Medsien

Medsien solutions can improve access for patients in need of senior care and remote care management. We address the changing demographics and demands of healthcare with scalable remote care solutions. We’ve reimagined senior care and remote care management with innovative, comprehensive programs to deal with these challenges.

  • Sophisticated Software
  • Staffing Augmentation
  • Personalized Care
  • Partnership

Medsien is the leading provider of scalable remote care management, and we offer one of the most advanced remote care platforms available. Medsien helps your organization enhance the patient experience with quality remote care programs, expand your practice with an empathetic team of experts and automate your workflows from start to finish. Medsien helps deliver care based on the three pillars of a quality patient experience - reliability, efficiency and compassion.

Sophisticated Software

Medsien’s technology was created with comprehensive quality, effectiveness and efficiency in mind. Our highly specialized software is designed to make it quick and easy to start a scalable remote care program - and then keep that system running effectively for everyone.

At the core of Medsien solutions is seamless integration with Veradigm EHR, which makes this fast, comprehensive, ready to go solution possible. Our unique, highly technical software makes Veradigm integration efficient and very effective - and allows Medsien to help you be up and running with a highly sophisticated, easy to use remote care program in about 5 days. Medsien’s deep integration with Veradigm offers a seamless experience for healthcare organizations, with features ranging from eligibility reports to automated tracking, reporting and billing. This end-to-end solution streamlines workflows and saves time for everyone involved.

We offer the most advanced, automated platform to power up your practice. You can count on our technology expertise, deep experience and understanding of technical infrastructure and our exceptional software to create secure programs. We can help you transform your organization and the remote care you provide - quickly, efficiently, effectively, reliably and safely. Read about hiring experts.

Staffing Augmentation

For most health organizations right now, teams are already understaffed, overworked, and overstressed - and are being asked to innovate and add programs without a lot of resources or enough staff. Provider satisfaction is trending downward. Providers not only feel stressed, exhausted and burnt out, but they feel staff shortages and burnout are contributing not only to a decrease in professional and provider satisfaction but potentially negatively impacting the quality of care provided as well. Read more about healthcare burnout.

Scalable remote care management solutions offer medical practices and organizations an opportunity to extend care beyond the walls of the practice and in-person office visits while improving health outcomes and the quality of care provided, provider and patient satisfaction, and increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of the care provided by the practice or healthcare organization. We augment your team with certified, highly rated care partners - providing the staffing for all remote care programs and components, so the client never has to worry about the administrative complexity, administrative burden or already overburdened staff having to hire or train staff for remote care services. This helps seniors and caregivers have more access to a personalized care team. Every patient in Medsien is assigned to a certified and highly rated team of dedicated care partners. With Medsien, you can augment and expand your team - no hiring or training required. There are no call centers - Medsien’s care partners develop personal relationships with patients—seamlessly and at scale.

With remote dedicated staffing, you have an entire certified clinical team within the practice dedicated exclusively to managing the remote care programs added to your organization. Remote dedicated staffing is one key part of scalable remote care solutions that help organizations improve the quality and effectiveness of care being provided in any organization. Companies that offer dedicated staffing combined with sophisticated software solutions and seamless Veradigm integration can transform your practice and patient care. It’s a really successful strategy, but can be an extremely heavy burden for practices and organizations to handle or do on their own.

Personalized care

Advancing technology and automation have significantly improved many aspects of healthcare organization efficiency, accuracy and costs, but they cannot replace the critical part of personal communication and connection that is essential to good, effective healthcare - especially for Medicare patients. In some cases, automation and cost-cutting have essentially replaced all personal communication required to manage care or get appointments - resulting sometimes in a very poor patient experience. Now, more than ever, it is crucial to figure out a way to use these important advances to improve efficiencies and effectiveness, while still understanding that healthcare is inherently personal. The key to good outcomes and patient and provider satisfaction - and ultimately value-based care - is to utilize effective advances while maintaining a way for patients and caregivers to communicate and have a personal connection.

Personalized care is connection, relationships, support and trust - being there for patients. As advances in health related technologies become more and more integrated into healthcare delivery, it remains essential to still maintain a focus on the patient and the patient experience. Also, some approaches to healthcare delivery are not just generational - connection, communication, and relationships actually are very important to providing high quality, accurate, timely and coordinated care to anyone. This will remain true as Gen X and then Gen Y - and maybe beyond - age into the Medicare population because this important level of communication, check-in, and having a point person is essential to coordinated care, decreased loneliness and good outcomes.

Create a partnership

Medsien isn’t a third-party player, vendor or simply your contractor for EHR integration and remote care management. Medsien is your partner in ensuring superior systems and excellent care. In our partnership, building many layers into the Veradigm to customize the perfect program for your healthcare organization, we combine the technical and the personal aspects of high-quality care to create successful, efficient, effective and deeply personal remote care through our remote care management programs. Medsien Care Partners- partner with your team clinically, operationally and personally. Our technical team works closely with you to design, build and monitor a customized remote care management program fine-tuned to your exact specifications and needs. Once underway, we remain closely connected to your program, making updates, and adjustments and caring for your patients together and as part of your team.

Why Medsien

To be done well, remote care management and remote monitoring programs require sophisticated software, seamless integration with Veradigm suite of products and full-time staff to enroll, manage and run the remote patient care portion of the care being provided. A solid program can require significant costs and resources of actual dollars, infrastructure, and onboarding and training of clinical and administrative staff. Staffing a scalable remote care management program requires significant resources as well - bodies and dollars - including all the costs required to manage, engage and compensate staff. In addition, there are important processes and workflows that require not only sophisticated software and seamless integration but highly trained staff to manage as well.

It seems unfathomable to find the time or a way to implement a solid remote care management solution for most organizations. But adding one could actually solve a lot of problems - sufficient staffing, work overload, burnout, administrative burden, and quality measures - and improve the effectiveness and efficiency of your practice, the quality of the care you provide, patient health outcomes and the satisfaction of your providers and patients.

Learn more about Medsien on the Veradigm App Expo.


  9. US Dept HHS - Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (OASH)

*approximation based on multiple data sources on number of baby boomers and accounting for and calculating annual growth

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