In India, approximately 9% of the population is above the age of 60, a figure that is predicted to increase significantly in the coming years. With growing life expectancy and modern lifestyles leading to fragmented families, the responsibility of caring for the elderly has become an area of concern. In such a scenario, companies like Welldercare are breaking new ground. Using state-of-the-art technology, they’re addressing critical gaps in healthcare services for the senior population. We had an exclusive conversation with Kanishka Acharya, CEO & Founder of Welldercare, to delve deeper into this urgent issue. Below is the comprehensive Q&A session, which also includes insights derived from recent studies and public health initiatives aimed at bettering senior care.
1. Could you please provide us with a snapshot of Welldercare and the range of healthcare services it provides, with a focus on senior citizens?
Welldercare is an end to end technology & services company that aims to fill the gaps in senior care that are current pain points. We leverage technology to aid better independent senior living.
Our suite of IoT & AI powered devices are designed to seamlessly integrate into daily living without any user compliance.
Since adoption to technology is a challenge in this demographic, our philosophy has been to ensure technology delivers the desired results without any user intervention.
A range of fall detections, smart lamps & portraits are the first level of the solutions. These AI powered devices are aesthetically designed to add to the living environment of our customers.
We are also developing smart mirrors that can detect all vitals – blood pressure, heart rate / Heart rate variability (HRV) Spo2 levels, temperature without any external devices.
Hence, one can just be brushing his or her teeth in the morning and the mirror is capturing all the vital details and porting the same to a back-end analytics platform that is constantly monitoring trends and detecting any anomalies.
The Iksana platform that is a first of its kind specifically for older adults and their families that integrates all technology devices and services and needs of daily living on to one easy to use platform.
Family members can get health dashboard of daily, weekly & monthly health parameters of their loved ones, doctors are aided by dashboards that offer deeper insights into health and can aid better clinical interventions.
2. We’d love to hear about the inspiration behind the inception of Welldercare and your specific interest in serving the elderly population.
Our vision is to build an organisation that is at the forefront of technology to empower older adults to live joyful independent lives with a complete control of their health.we believe the long terms solution is to ensure healthier ageing journeys that will keep older adults away from the nursing & care homes thereby reducing the burden on healthcare systems world over.
3. Can you elaborate on the unique challenges faced by the elder generation that Welldercare aims to address through its services and initiatives?
The traditional social contract of joint families or parents & children living together has collapsed due to migration for job opportunities.
This leaves parents isolated and often wanting for care and access to healthcare. One of the key challenges in independent living amongst this demographic is Falls.
Typically, 1 in 3 older adults have a fall once a year, this is a sentinel event in their lives, post which their health is never the same.
The challenge for children who are living away from parents is to be able to ensure these events are attended to immediately without any human supervisory need.
Our technology seamlessly integrates into the homes of older adults without any user compliance required to detect falls and trigger rapid emergency response.
The other key challenge is for senior citizens and their children to have a 360 insight over their parent’s health without subjecting them to constant tests, checks that are psychologically defeating.
Our Ambient technology can capture all vital parameters non-invasively to provide detailed health dashboards to older adults, their children, and doctors.
Trends are constantly being monitored and anomalies are immediately flagged to ensure timely intervention before any condition turns symptomatic and severe.
4. In today’s tech-driven world, could you share your strategies and plans for leveraging technology to enhance the quality of care provided to senior citizens? Are there any specific digital tools or perhaps an app in the works?
Certainly. When talking about our strategy, we would begin with a deep understanding of the needs and challenges faced by seniors. Furthermore, we have plans to come up with systems that maintain health records, medication management, and remote monitoring to provide comprehensive healthcare solutions. Additionally, we have also developed systems for fall detection, ensuring safety of the seniors. We also have strategies to come up with health-focused applications to help seniors combat isolation and live independently.
5. Are there any exciting collaborations on the horizon for Welldercare? Are you considering partnerships with other organizations in the elderly care sector to broaden your impact and reach?
Welldercare has recently launched the ‘Nobi Smart Lamp’ in the Indian market in collaboration with the Belgian age-tech company Nobi. This innovative AI-powered smart lamp is designed to enhance the safety of elderly individuals by detecting as well as preventing falls. This strategic partnership seeks to address the global issue of falls among senior citizens by delivering lifesaving solutions through the Iksana platform, one of Welldercare’s flagship products.
Welldercare has established partnerships with renowned global technology companies to develop AI and IoT products and services that incorporate technologinnovations.
Our technology is designed to effortlessly integrate these innovations into our platforms and devices without the need for substantial hardware or software changes.
Furthermore, we also have knowledge-sharing collaborations with several academic institutions and universities to be aware about the emerging technologies that support our mission of enhancing the lives of seniors.