Friday Five: Emerging technologies likely to impact both older adults and the workforce

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March 08, 2019

In this week’s Friday Five, MAXIMUS is reading about growth in the American workforce, a potential Medicaid compromise in Idaho, how technology can help the aging population, robotic process automation, and obstacles to innovation within government IT.

1. A hot US job market is coaxing people in from the sidelines

Many individuals who gave up on looking for work during the recession have returned to the job market. According to the Star-Tribune, these job seekers helped lead to an increased hiring rate in 2018. The unemployment rate is now at 4%, with 80% of Americans ages 25-54 reporting they have a job. Economists found the strong job market tends to benefit racial minorities and individuals with less than a college degree.

2. Panel produces ‘compromise’ bill on Medicaid expansion

Idaho has introduced a Medicaid expansion waiver bill that includes seven restrictions. According to the Lewiston Tribune, the House committee put forward a ‘compromise’ bill as an alternative to the voter-approved Medicaid expansion initiative. Most restrictions would require federal approval. They include adding work requirements, limiting retroactive eligibility, and allowing private mental health providers to qualify for Medicaid payments.

3. White House: 6 ways tech can help aging Americans

Earlier this week, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy released a report on how technology can help the elderly population. According to McKnight’s Senior Living, the report focuses on six main takeaways: assistance with daily living, monitoring cognitive health, and improving communication, mobility, access to transportation and care coordination.

4. RPA is the new ‘it’ technology — so, when will it get the spotlight?

FedScoop claims robotic process automation (RPA) is the “gateway technology” that will help federal workers focus on high-value tasks. As agencies begin to introduce RPA, it’s still too soon to tell the effect it might have on the federal workforce.

5. Creating space for innovation

What are the major challenges for implementing innovation and technology? FCW asked a group of government information technology leaders, and they responded. Obstacles to innovation included security risks and requirements, centralized IT services, a lack of internal champions, and acknowledging that custom development isn’t practical.