As our loved ones age the tempo of their lives changes. The process is inevitable yet delicate. When we step up to care for family members, we find that the human eye easily misses subtle cues that, if detected, could spur us to take action in providing help before a trip to the hospital is necessary. Here starts the story of CarePredict.
CarePredict founder, Satish Movva, was looking for ways to help care for his aging parents and provide himself peace of mind. As his parents’ power of observation declined, he realized their self-reporting of their health was not comprehensive and often inaccurate. Since 2013, CarePredict’s mission has grown into a movement to transform this rapidly growing, underserved market and empower better care for all seniors.
There are more than 600 million seniors around the world over the age of 65 and this number continues to grow. This group will expand to 1.6 billion by 2050 – one of the largest demographic shifts in human history. Humans are living longer than ever, but the infrastructure and systems we currently have in place cannot scale to accommodate this longer life span. The senior population’s growth is outpacing the number of available caretakers. Many seniors will not have saved enough money to take care of themselves and may then rely on adult children or other care providers. All of this creates a massive, universal societal challenge.
Who will take care of us?
Proactive vs Reactive Senior Care: A Shift
Time is of the essence when it comes to senior care. Even before vitals decline, senior adults show declines in their daily activities such as eating, sleeping, grooming, toileting, etc. In order to catch these early “invisible signs” of an issue and enable intervention, daily activity and behavior patterns need to be monitored continuously.
We currently rely heavily on human observation to identify these declines, before they are clinically apparent. For example, falls and fall risks, malnutrition, depression, dehydration, urinary tract infections and mild cognitive impairments. However, human observation is often unreliable, inefficient or expensive – and it cannot scale. The number of caregivers is not sufficient and human observation is simply not possible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
So, how do we get beyond this?
Much of the monitoring technology on the market fails to provide for the aging population. It can be good at monitoring things – like an opening door or someone entering a room– but unable to detect exactly who is doing what or identify small changes in a senior’s daily patterns which could indicate a significant change in health or functional status.
Consumer wearables were a step towards personalization. But step counts, pulse rates, etc. were insufficient at revealing meaningful changes in the daily patterns of seniors because they lacked context and only tracked limited activities.
Enter Carepredict’s end-to-end solution.
Carepredict’s Tempo wearable device is worn on the wrist of the dominant arm and identifies what activity the wearer is engaged in (sleeping, walking, sitting, grooming, etc.) It also provides real-time location tracking. This data is classified and neural nets establish a rolling baseline for the individual senior. Then, personalized, actionable insights are delivered on health conditions.
There are over 8 highly sensitive sensors, like Valencell’s biometric sensor, that play a vital role in collecting relevant activity data. Accurate heart rate rata enables accurate reads on sleep patterns, depth of sleep and more – an accelerometer tracking motion is not enough to properly track sleep. Tracking heart rate at times when seniors are not/cannot be observed, like during a bath, helps to accurately identify the probability of drowning, falling and even stroke. Ensuring the senior is consistently wearing their device is also important. Seeing a heart rate signal is an easy way to confirm the user is actually wearing their device.
The Tempo was designed with seniors in mind. It is packed with features like two-way voice capabilities that allow caregivers and seniors to communicate through the app. The device can also be used as a keyless access control within a facility. A primary concern of senior living communities is to increase resident comfort. CarePredict’s Tempo wearable can be used to open doors or any other areas that require access controls. Apart from providing convenience, the keyless access also ensures the safety of residents and their compliance in wearing the device.
As we go through our daily routines, we all perform our activities of daily living slightly differently. For example, there are hundreds of ways people brush their teeth, eat, drink, etc. Machine learning discerns which activity is being performed and identifies the individual’s unique behavioral patterns. It also helps recognize trends in complicated and disparate data sets. For example, several different types of activity, taken in aggregate, may indicate an emerging mental health risk for an individual.
Insights, to be useful, must be served up in a timely manner to the right people, at the right time. CarePredict delivers actionable insights through real-time alerts, web-based dashboards, and self-serve reports. Insights requiring immediate attention are served up to care staff. Notifications of potential elopement, entry into restricted areas, night movement outside resident suites, and too much time spent in the bathroom. For example, alerts for a potential elopement in progress are sent immediately, while a worrisome downward trend in eating may be highlighted on a daily health and wellness report.
There is fall prediction and detection and a voice alarm. There have also been additional sensors added for ambient and environmental monitoring.
Not just for seniors…
In senior living facilities, it’s not just the seniors using the device, but also the staff. Facilities use the device to track workplace productivity using real-time and historical location data of the staff to document their efficiency in responding to the needs of seniors. Managers can understand the quantity and quality of care required and being provided. They can engage with and empower staff and streamline their workforce while improving existing operations within the facility.
Alternatively, the insights provided by the Carepredict Home system can be used by family caregivers to take proactive measures and provide timely interventions. Being monitored in this way gives senior loved ones the option to age safely in the comfort of their own homes while providing peace of mind for their family.
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