SOURCE: Healthwise

October 11, 2007 08:00 ET

How the Baby Boomers Can Save Health Care

Healthwise® "Gray" Paper Shows How the Ix® Solution Helps the Boomers to Help Themselves

BOISE, ID--(Marketwire - October 11, 2007) - That graying generation of Baby Boomers is barreling down the highway to health care. They can and will transform the system -- for better or worse depends on whether they are equipped with the rules, tools, and information to master their complex health issues, according to a new Healthwise "gray" paper (a play on words for the traditional white paper). "How the Baby Boomers Can Save Health Care," by Molly Mettler, MSW, and Don Kemper, MPH, can be downloaded at www.healthwise.org.

Mettler and Kemper call on the Baby Boom Generation to be a vital resource to help reverse the health care trends of workforce shortages, inconsistent quality, and skyrocketing costs. But success, the authors say, hinges on whether clinics, hospitals, and health plans tap the power of the Boomer patient through Ix Solution tools.

  -- Self-Service Tools: 24x7 access to health information, symptom
     checkers, and decision aids in self-care guides and on Web sites.
  -- Information Prescription Tools: Short information prescriptions
     "prescribed" to patients by their doctors or health plans at every
     "moment in care."
  -- Engagement Tools: Ongoing, interactive programs that are personalized
     and targeted to meet each individual's self-management needs over
     time.

The Ix Solution tools support three simple rules for saving the system:
  #1 The Self-Care Rule: Help Boomers do as much for themselves as they
     can.
  #2 The Guidelines Rule: Help Boomers ask for the health care they need.
  #3 The Veto Rule: Help Boomers say "no" to care they don't need.

"The Baby Boom Generation has the power and the opportunity to reframe, and refocus, health care," Mettler says. "Once they are engaged and empowered to make better health decisions, Boomers can become the force that saves health care."

"How Baby Boomers Can Save Health Care" is the first of a trilogy of "gray" papers about Baby Boomers and their impact on the health care system.

About Healthwise

Healthwise is a nonprofit organization with a mission to help people make better health decisions. Nearly 100 million times a year, people turn to Healthwise information to learn how to do more for themselves, ask for the care they need, and say "no" to the care they don't need. Healthwise partners with health plans, hospitals, disease management companies, and health Web sites to provide up-to-date, evidence-based information to the people they serve. To learn more about the Healthwise Information Therapy (Ix®) Solution, visit www.healthwise.org or call 1.800.706.9646.

Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated. © Copyright 2007, Healthwise, Incorporated.

Contact Information