New Section for Older Adults Launches on FAIR Health Consumer Website

September 29, 2022

As people get older, knowing how to use the healthcare system and choose the best care is crucial. With funding in part from The John A. Hartford Foundation, FAIR Health has launched a new section for older adults on our free, award-winning consumer website, The new section includes tools you can use to plan for the costs of your care and make better healthcare choices. You can use the tools to discuss your choices with your provider and your caregiver or care partner.

The Older Adult section includes five new shared decision-making tools. Shared decision making is a discussion between clinicians and patients and/or their family caregivers and care partners. The goal is to decide on treatment options that include patients’ values and preferences. Shared decision making is helpful if there’s more than one way to treat your health problem. It can be particularly useful if there’s no clear “right” choice.

FAIR Health offers decision aids (with clinical and cost information) for use in shared decision making. These decision aids help older patients and their caregivers/care partners talk with providers about the trade-offs involved in each clinical choice. This can help with choosing the option that lines up with their priorities and values. The new tools combine clinical and cost information associated with different treatment options for early-stage breast cancer, hip osteoarthritis, hip replacement, spinal stenosis and fast-growing prostate cancer.

The decision aids are not medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The clinical options in the decision aids should be discussed with healthcare professionals, as each patient’s condition will vary.

The Older Adult section also offers three new FH® Total Treatment Cost tools. These “total treatment cost” scenarios highlight the range of costs associated with three conditions relevant to older adults. The conditions are Alzheimer’s disease/dementia, heart failure and major depression.

In addition, the Older Adult section contains educational content and resources related to the care of older adults. The materials can be printed. Included are a section on financial health literacy, patient- and caregiver-oriented checklists with suggested questions to ask providers, and links to external resources relevant to the conditions featured. Family caregivers can access the tools and resources in this section too.

The Older Adult section also houses tools and resources relevant to palliative care for seriously ill patients.

To visit the section for older adults, click here.