Building on Boomer Trends: Q&A with Interim HealthCare's Linda Shaub

As the first in-home senior care franchise company, Interim HealthCare has always been on top of market trends. Successfully responding to those trends has allowed the company to steadily build its business for more than 40 years. Established in 1966, the company has grown to 322 franchises in 39 states, providing a complete range of services, from nonmedical to Medicare Certification. We asked Interim's Vice President of Marketing Linda Shaub about what's driving her company's business today.

What demographic trends are affecting your business?

As the Baby Boomers age, consumer trends in the senior care market are constantly emerging, creating new opportunities for us. The latest market trends are being driven by family mobility, new perspectives on aging, and technology advances. Families are more mobile than ever. It is the exception rather than the rule for all family members to live in the same city, or even the same state, making the ability to communicate across the country by telephone, text, and email a very important part of the company's in-home care services.

What's different about seniors today?

Perspectives on aging continue to evolve as life expectancy ages increase. Life expectancy is now 78, and the fastest-growing age group is the 85-plus population. To put aging in perspective, one expert compares the classic painting of Whistler's Mother, who was 61 when she posed for him, with a photo of Sophia Loren at 61. Seeing those two side by side makes us realize how much our outlook on aging has changed.

Seniors have many dimensions in their lives--physical, financial, emotional, social, and spiritual--and care management needs to address all of them. They also have a strong desire to remain at home, or age in place, which drives the demand for in-home services. Advances in technology play an important role in seniors' ability to stay home. Many tests and treatments, from X-rays to I.V. therapy, can now be done at home rather than at a hospital, lab, or clinic.

How do you stay ahead of the curve?

An important trend is really looking at all aspects of aging from a multi-dimensional perspective. Care management needs to address all facets of aging, and we are expanding on that for the future. Our continuum of care also includes working with all providers of services, as a client or patient moves from hospital to home or independent living facility. We are an important part of that process.

What is the key to your success?

Our commitment to educating consumers is the real key to the company's success in responding to market trends. We've always operated with the philosophy that we want to educate consumers, so they can live safe, independent, and rich lives. It is very important for people to understand the range of services available to them at home so they can access those services and age in place. We truly offer an opportunity to help people, and we are very glad to be able to do that.

Linda Shaub, Vice President of Marketing for Interim HealthCare, is responsible for the company's brand management and strategic development, and for implementing all marketing initiatives to drive growth throughout the franchise network. Previously, she was general manager at an ad agency specializing in the health care and movie industries. She has more than 20 years of health care experience working for community and tertiary health care facilities, in addition to serving as director of marketing for a national health agency. She currently serves as a Gubernatorial Appointee to the Florida Board of Occupational Therapy, and she is a Certified Senior Advisor.

Published: March 16th, 2011

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