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2014 press releases

ICAA celebrates 13th anniversary by releasing groundbreaking research

New report highlights industry’s preparedness to increase services that improve quality of life for older adults

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[Vancouver, BC] How ready is your organization to provide wellness services for older adults?

This was the essential question posed in the 2014 Wellness Readiness Survey performed by the International Council on Active Aging® (ICAA).

The first of its kind in North America and sponsored by Precor, the survey polled 721 respondents working in organizations connected to (or members of) the ICAA – executive, managerial staff and general employees of companies serving the older adult market. Companies surveyed included organizations with programs and facilities for older adults who live independently or need some assistance.

They were asked about their lifestyle/wellness services, such as arts and cultural programs, intellectual and social opportunities, physical activities and health education.

Preliminary results of the survey were publicized in April of 2014. Now the findings are available in full detail in ICAA’s just-released, 52-page report: ICAA Wellness Readiness Survey 2014 and its companion 16-page publication: Appendix on Staffing and Participation.

The results show that most organizations are moving in the right direction.

“Today’s older consumers are demanding more out of life than the medical model provides,” says Colin Milner, Founder and CEO of ICAA. “They want to maintain their quality of life for as long as possible. Organizations in the active-aging industry that are responding to this need with new products, services, programs and environments will surely come out on top.”

Among the survey’s salient findings:

• 90% of managers rated lifestyle and wellness offerings as ‘very important’ or ‘extremely important’ for business growth.

• 88% of managers expect to increase investment in wellness over the next two years – the top priorities being adding wellness-related services (44%) and building or significantly remodeling for lifestyle/wellness activities (29%).

• Wellness and lifestyle offerings were ranked as a high priority or essential by 79% of all respondents. About the same number (81%) are taking action to expand or maintain lifestyle/wellness programs.

• Almost all (81%) of respondents said “wellness” or “quality of life” or “well-being” or “lifestyle” are present in the organization’s mission statement.

Milner says he is pleased with the results.

"The importance of prevention and lifestyle activities for older adults is apparent in these results,” he says. “Organizations serving older adults seem to be adopting the active-aging wellness philosophy. ICAA’s findings show a high level of readiness – and response – to the need for more programs and facilities to enhance physical, emotional and spiritual fulfillment in older adults’ lives.”

The survey includes information on staffing, adequacy of facilities for providing wellness services and an outline of the successes and challenges facing the wellness workforce.

“Research continues to show that cognitive and physical activity and social interaction help older adults maintain their independence and stay as physically and mentally healthy as possible,” says Patricia Ryan, ICAA’s vice president of education. “The surveyed organizations see lifestyle and wellness services as an important part of their missions. Older adults and their families who locate such organizations will find the encouragement and opportunities to lead fulfilled lives."

The ICAA Wellness Readiness Survey is available to non-ICAA members and ICAA Individual members for US $149 on the ICAA website at http://www.icaa.cc/business/research.htm

Complimentary copies are available to ICAA Organizational and ICAA 100 members.

For questions or to order, call 866-335-9777 or 604-734-4466.

About the survey
Conducted in February and March of 2014, the ICAA’s Wellness Readiness Survey was the first of its kind in North America. There were 721 respondents working in organizations that are connected to or members of the ICAA, including executive, managerial staff and general employees of companies serving the older adult market – organizations with programs and facilities for older adults who live independently or need some assistance.

About the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA)

Since 2001, ICAA, a professional association that leads, connects and defines the active-aging industry, has supported professionals who develop wellness facilities, programs and services for adults over 50. The association is focused on active aging – an approach to aging that helps older adults live life as fully as possible within all dimensions of wellness – and provides its members with education, information, resources and tools. As an active-aging educator and advocate, ICAA has advised numerous organizations and governmental bodies, including the US Administration on Aging, the National Institute on Aging (one of the US National Institutes of Health), the US Department of Health and Human Services, Canada’s Special Senate Committee on Aging, and the British Columbia (Canada) ministries of Health and Healthy Living and Sport.

For questions:

Contact: Colin Milner, CEO, ICAA
Toll-free: 1-866-335-9777 (North America)
Telephone: 604-734-4466; cell: 604-763-4595
colinmilner@icaa.cc

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