frontiers.health
The Digitization of Elderly Care
%5Bvc_row+equal_height%3D%22yes%22%5D%5Bvc_column%5D%5Bvc_single_image+image%3D%225012%22+img_size%3D%22full%22+alignment%3D%22center%22%5D%5Bultimate_spacer+height%3D%2230%22+height_on_tabs%3D%2215%22+height_on_tabs_portrait%3D%2215%22+height_on_mob_landscape%3D%2215%22+height_on_mob%3D%2215%22%5D%5B%2Fvc_column%5D%5B%2Fvc_row%5D%5Bvc_row+css%3D%22.vc_custom_1561037856751%7Bpadding-top%3A+20px+%21important%3Bpadding-bottom%3A+20px+%21important%3B%7D%22%5D%5Bvc_column%5D%5Bvc_column_text+el_class%3D%22post-text%22%5D%0D%0A%3Ch4%3EThis+article+has+been+written+by+Daniel+Steffen%2C+Senior+Investment+Manager+at+IBB+Beteiligungsgesellschaft%2C+the+Venture+Funds+of+the+state+of+Berlin%3C%2Fh4%3E%0D%0ABesides+drug+development%2C+biotech%2C+medtech+and+diagnostics%2C+we+have+here+a+specific+interest+in+promising+digital+health+and+software+solutions+in+the+rapidly+growing+and+challenging+market+of+elderly+care.+We+made+several+investments+in+that+space+and+already+exited+companies+successfully+such+as%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fpflegebox.de%2F%22%3EPflegeBox%3C%2Fa%3E%2C%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.media4care.de%2F%22%3EMedia4Care%3C%2Fa%3E%2C%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22http%3A%2F%2Fnursit-institute.de%2Fde%2Fstartseite%2F%22%3ENursIT%3C%2Fa%3E%C2%A0and%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.seniovo.de%2F%22%3ESeniovo%3C%2Fa%3E.+However%2C+not+only+from+an+investor%E2%80%99s+perspective%2C+but+from+everyone%E2%80%99s+private+perspective+it+is+highly+important+to+get+a+better+understanding+about+elderly+care+and+its+practical+relevance+because+it+is+just+inevitable+that+anyone+of+us+will+have+a+relative+dependent+on+care+or+that+we+will+at+some+time+become+dependent+ourselves.+Today+I+like+to+share+some+ideas+and+examples+with+you+how+digitization+can+impact+elderly+care%2C+for+instance%2C+in+supporting+families%2C+relieving+caregivers+and+improving+workflows.%0D%0A%0D%0AAs+a+result+of+the+demographic+change+towards+an+ageing+population+in+most+western+countries%2C+the+market+for+elderly+care+is+undergoing+a+rapid+growth+%28see+table+below%29.+To+meet+the+requirements+of+this+development%2C+the+market+faces+enormous+challenges+across+all+of+its+segments+like+home+care%2C+assisted+living%2C+adult+day+care%2C+long+term+care%2C+care%2Fnursing+homes+and+hospice+care.+Such+challenges+comprise%2C+for+instance%2C+investments+in+new+care+facilities+and+beds%2C+the+competition+for+qualified+personnel%2C+the+care+profession%E2%80%99s+attractiveness%2C+prevention%2C+promotion+of+health+as+well+as+automation+and+digitization+of+processes+and+routine+activities.%0D%0A%0D%0A%5Bcaption+id%3D%22attachment_5009%22+align%3D%22aligncenter%22+width%3D%22469%22%5D%3Cimg+class%3D%22+wp-image-5009%22+src%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.frontiers.health%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2019%2F10%2Feurostat.png%22+alt%3D%22%22+width%3D%22469%22+height%3D%22352%22+%2F%3E+Source%3A+Eurostat%5B%2Fcaption%5D%0D%0A%0D%0AIn+Germany+there+are+currently+3.4+million+people+in+need+of+long-term+care%2C+of+which+2.6+million+receive+care+by+their+families+and%2For+with+assistance+of+home+care+providers.+Due+to+the+fast-growing+population+of+the+ageing+person%2C+but+the+only+slow-growing+bed+supply%2C+more+and+more+relatives+will+be+responsible+for+the+care+of+their+family+members+at+home.%0D%0A%0D%0AIt+is+obvious+that+there+is+a+huge+need+for+action+to+implement+new+measures+and+to+bring+new+solutions+to+the+market+to+relieve+care-giving+relatives%2C+as+well+as+care+professionals.+By+means+of+digitization%2C+technology+and+novel+service+models%2C+start-ups+can+make+substantial+contributions.+To+get+into+a+little+more+detail%2C+I+like+to+present+to+you+an+exemplary+selection+of+elderly+care+start-ups%2C+some+of+them+are+or+had+been+in+our+portfolio.%0D%0A%0D%0A%3Cstrong%3ESupport+of+Families+at+Home%3C%2Fstrong%3E%0D%0A%0D%0AOf+these+2.6+million+people+in+need+of+care+at+home%2C+an+almost+inconceivable+number+of+1.8+million+receive+care+by+their+families+only.+This+is%2C+without+any+doubt%2C+a+huge+burden.+Unfortunately+it+comes+with+many+types+of%2C+to+a+certain+extent+even+unforeseen%2C+challenges.%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.pflege.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3Epflege.de%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%C2%A0and%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Ftoechtersoehne.com%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3ET%C3%B6chter%26amp%3BS%C3%B6hne%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%C2%A0offer+access+to+extensive+content%2C+some+of+it+as+video-based+trainings%2C+on+most+practical%2C+statutory%2C+financial+and+social+aspects+if+someone+becomes+dependent+on+care.%0D%0A%0D%0AOne+practical+matter+comes+in+the+form+of+specific+nursing+and+incontinence+products+for+everyday+use.+To+avoid+frequently+visits+of+pharmacies+and+medical+stores+as+well+as+bureaucratic+hurdles+with+your+care+insurance%2C%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fpflegebox.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3EPflegeBox%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%C2%A0offers+a+selection+of+different%2C+curated+sets+of+such+care+products+on+a+monthly+subscription-base+and+settles+all+aspects+on+cost+takeover+directly+with+the+insurance.%0D%0A%0D%0AIn+addition%2C+medical+alert+systems+are+covered+by+care+insurances+likewise.+These+systems+can+help+seniors+to+live+at+home+longer+and+more+independent+but+can+be+very+useful+for+elderly+who+do+not+receive+care+at+home+all+day+long.+Companies+like%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.libify.com%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3ELibify%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%3Cem%3E%C2%A0%3C%2Fem%3Eand%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zembro.com%2Fde-DE%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3EZembro%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%3Cem%3E%C2%A0%3C%2Fem%3Eoffer+modern%2C+smartwatch-integrated+and+to+emergency+centres+and+relatives+connected+solutions.%0D%0A%0D%0AIn+many+cases%2C+living+and+care-giving+at+home+even+requires+adaptations+you+need+to+make+to+your+home.+These+changes+can%2C+for+instance%2C+range+from+stair+lifts%2C+bannisters%2C+widened+doorways%2C+and+outdoor+ramps+to+bath+lifts%2C+walk-in+showers+and+grab+rails.+Berlin-based%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.seniovo.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3ESeniovo%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%3Cstrong%3E%C2%A0%3C%2Fstrong%3Emakes+it+easy+to+hire+qualified+fitters+from+their+own+partner-network+for+such+specific+needs+of+elderly+care+at+home.%0D%0A%0D%0AFamilies+that+cannot+provide+the+required+care+for+their+family+member+may+need+to+find+assistance+with+daily+activities+such+as+bathing%2C+dressing%2C+and+eating%2C+with%0D%0A%0D%0Ahousehold+chores%2C+shopping+and+therapy.+Via%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.careship.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3ECareship%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%2C%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.betreut.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3Ebetreut.de%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%2C%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wohnen-im-alter.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3EWohnen-im-Alter%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%2C+and%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.pflegix.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3EPflegix%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%3Cem%3E%2C%C2%A0%3C%2Fem%3Efor+example%3Cem%3E%2C%C2%A0%3C%2Fem%3Eyou+can+find+the+home+health+care+services+and+in-home+care+services+you+need.+If+care+at+home+is+not+possible+anymore%2C+some+of+such+marketplaces+even+let+you+find%2C+compare+and+contact+retirement+homes%2C+and+care+facilities+such+as+care%2Fnursing+homes+and+hospice+care+providers.%0D%0A%0D%0A%3Cstrong%3EDigitization+Potentials+in+Care+Facilities%3C%2Fstrong%3E%0D%0A%0D%0ANot+only+in+home+care%2C+but+also+in+the+segment+of+professional+care+facilities+there+is+a+huge+need+to+support+caregivers+in+their+everyday+work%2C+to+optimize+daily+routines%2C+to+enhance+the+attractiveness+of+the+care+profession+itself%2C+especially+since+facility+operators+are+struggling+already+now+to+find+personnel%2C+and+to+improve+quality+of+life+of+elderly+in+need+of+care.+One+digitization+potential+lies+for+instance+in+the+documentation+of+all+nursing+activities.+It+can+take+nurses+around+40%25+of+their+working+hours+to+document+their+day-to-day+work.+To+considerably+reduce+such+documentation+efforts%2C%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22http%3A%2F%2Fnursit-institute.de%2Fde%2Fstartseite%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3ENursIT%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%C2%A0developed+a+holistic+software+suite.+Once+implemented%2C+on+average+nurses+can+gain+one+hour+on+nursing+time+per+patient.%0D%0A%0D%0AAnother+solution+to+ease+the+everyday+pressure+of+nurses+and+to+improve+the+quality+of+life+of+seniors+is+a+specific+tablet+of%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fwww.media4care.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3EMedia4Care%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E%2C+which+consists+of+diverse+entertainment+formats+%28e.g.+movies%2C+images%2C+games%29+which+were+specifically+produced+for+elderly%2C+especially+for+those+with+cognitive+dysfunctions+like+dementia+or+Alzheimer%E2%80%99s+disease.+With+the+integration+of+further+functionalities+like+a+family+portal+to+better+communicate+with+relatives%2C+the+tablet+is+being+developed+towards+a+holistic+service+platform.+The+tablets+can+be+used+by+elderly+at+home+as+well+%E2%80%94+with+or+without+need+of+care.%0D%0A%0D%0AOne+on+communication+and+family+integration+specialised+provider+is%C2%A0%3Ca+href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Fmyo.de%2F%22%3E%3Cstrong%3E%3Cem%3Emyo%3C%2Fem%3E%3C%2Fstrong%3E%3C%2Fa%3E.+With+myo%2C+nurses+can+share+video%2C+text+and+voice+messages+with+relatives%2C+so+they+can+gain+a+better+insight+into+their+family+member%E2%80%99s+wellbeing+and+activities.+Through+direct+integration+and+transparency+into+daily+routines%2C+unnecessary+phone+calls+can+be+reduced+and+more+time+for+direct+interaction+with+elderly+can+be+won.%0D%0A%0D%0ANonetheless%2C+seniors+in+care+facilities+will+still+spend+time+without+assistance+and+maybe+take+a+walk+in+or+around+their+nursing+home.+While+doing+so%2C+there+is+a+significant+risk+they+might+fall.+That+is+why+regularly+geriatric+assessments+are+mandatory+to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