A non-profit organization recently reported that spending time on the internet could help depressed older persons feel better.
The Phoenix Center claims that internet access could diminish the incidence of depression among seniors and this might trim the nation's healthcare bill.
"Maintaining relationships with friends and family at a time in life when mobility becomes increasingly limited is challenging for the elderly," said Dr Sherry Ford of the Phoenix Center.
"Increased internet access and use by senior citizens enables them to connect with sources of social support when face-to-face interaction becomes more difficult."
Dr Ford is a co-author of a paper entitled Internet Use and Depression Among the Elderly. Her work examined the survey responses of 7,000 Americans in retirement living situations.
The Pew Internet and American Life Project estimates that 42 percent of Americans over the age of 65 go online. It also claims that billions of dollars are spent on depression-related healthcare costs each year.
"Efforts to expand broadband use in the U.S. must eventually tackle the problem of low adoption in the elderly population," said the Phoenix Center's Dr George Ford.