Earn some extra credit

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John O'Connor
John O'Connor

It wasn't long ago that this sector described itself as high-touch, but not high-tech.

The high-touch claim remains valid. But technology also has become omnipresent. Think about it: Does a day in your professional life go by without the input of a sensor, app, software program, smart phone or other technology-driven tool? Probably not.

As quiet revolutions go, technology has been a true game-changer. And it's coming at us faster than ever.

Speaking of tech developments, it gives me great pleasure to note that the 2017 McKnight's Technology Awards contest is now underway. This one-of-a-kind event recognizes providers who are harnessing technology to improve eldercare. There's no better way for your organization to get the recognition it deserves for technology-related efforts.

Applications are being accepted in five categories: “Quality Through Technology Award,” “Dignity Through Technology Award,” “High Tech/High Touch Award,” “Innovator of the Year Award” and the “Transitions Award.” We'll write about the winners in a big spread later this year. 

We invite you to submit your best work for this prestigious contest. And if you entered before and didn't win, please submit again. Maybe this time will be the charm!

An independent, national panel will ensure that your submissions are judged fairly and impartially, and with the authority and respect they deserve. But the only way to get your hands on an award is to impress the judges with the quality of your organization's work. Past winners have included providers of all sizes, small and large, promoting many different kinds of technologies. Remember: The key is how it improves the lives of those living in your community. 

In addition, I'd like to point out that McKnight's Long-Term Care News is running a special technology supplement in the middle of this issue. We're offering an in-depth look at three critical issues: where operators are making their tech investments, hurdles to growth, and the growing cyber-security risk. 

The field's no-tech days may be gone forever. But that's not necessarily a bad thing.