Loon’s Smart Technologies Tackle Aging And Caregiving

Loon Medical’s CareSentinel System uses Bluetooth and Mobile Apps to make Caregiving easier

The relationship between a Caregiver and patient is unlike any other. Periods of angst and moments of dependency can boil down to bits of communication on any given day. Minutes sometimes turn into hours. Years occasionally go quicker than months. Rarely is there an opportunity to change this relationship as it relates to needs of the Caregivers and demands for patients.

In fact, research by Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business found that caregivers reported spending an average 88 hours per month on caregiving activities in addition to the 69% that work full-time and 77% that have children in their household. Whether provided by family or health care professionals, caregivers everywhere are facing tougher circumstances as the request for home care grows higher each year.

What’s missing between those overstretched caregivers, their daily schedules of care, and the demands from a rising number of patients is clear: a technology that allows caregivers to deliver better care more efficiently while respecting the patient’s right to socialize, retain a personal level of freedom, and experience moments of independence.

The 2015 report “Family Matters In Caregiving and Technology Adoption”, highlighted a typical situation where communication barriers, misunderstandings, and misaligned needs were responsible for the low adoption rate of technology in healthcare. Take this father-daughter story for example;

“In an interview, a daughter described grocery shopping online as a “wonderful service. However, when speaking with her father, he expressed that he did not want to use it because going to the grocery store was an opportunity for her father to get out of the house. It offered him both freedom and choice. ”
— Family Matters In Caregiving and Technology Adoption, April 2015

In some cases, like this one, a narrowed view on the use of technology deprives the aging population from experiencing enriched social interactions. All too often, technologies offering only health and safety monitoring products ignore the potential for benefits within a caregiving relationship. This is a significant reason why loneliness has become the number one predictor of functional decline and death in adults age 60+.

Bottom line; caregivers need to meet the practical reality of their duties each day, but also utilize the technology made available to improve the effectiveness of their caregiving while enhancing the lifestyle of their patients.

As the rate of home care agencies continue to rise and a growing elderly population moves further away from hospitals and nursing homes, the demand for affordable and reliable care is at an all time high. Thus, innovators like Loon Medical, a progressive medical products developer in Southeastern Connecticut, are asking themselves:

“How can we make Caregiving more efficient for the caregiver, less stressful for the patient, help reduce hospital readmissions, and make the process more affordable for the healthcare industry?”.
CareSentinel’s CareCom button instantly alerts a Caregiver when a patient has left an area.

The success of the ride service application Uber is a good example of how smart technologies have proven themselves as unicorns when it comes to innovation. Features such as location tracking, push notifications, GPS, and video monitoring allow innovators to change the world around them thanks to the advancements in what can be called the handheld era. In just three years, requesting a ride went from a wave or a whistle to one simple touch on a screen with Uber. This location feature, now available on almost every smart device, has taken the convenience of getting a ride and made it available in almost every major city across the country.

Convenient for a majority of the world’s on-the-go millennial population, yes; but unlike the thriving transportation service industry, the marketplace for technology and home care has yet to experience the benefits associated with these technologies on a daily basis.

Today, there is still one large segment of today’s population, the elderly, who have not been able to mesh the advantages of technologies with reality. Uber technology brought a more efficient, less expensive relationship between riders and drivers. Similarly, a caregiver’s role as guardian for health and safety has created a demand for more than just a home companion, but also an individual capable of inducing a successful aging process.

A caregiver’s main responsibilities follow Maslow’s hierarchy of needs; hygiene, food, safety, and health. But those needs do not exist in a vacuum. Socialization, esteem, and self-actualization are three other equally-important needs where caregiving seems to be falling short. According to multiple studies and numerous reasons, caregivers have not fully leveraged technology to help meet these additional needs.

Loon Medical responded to this problem with an innovative solution. It designed, developed, and safety-tested a caregiver system run entirely via smartphones and tablets.

Innovative technology features to monitor and alert a patient’s every movements makes CareSentinel the 1st fully-customized caregiver alert system to help caregivers 24/7. Wirelessly connected through Bluetooth technology, Loon’s patented CareSentinel monitoring system has proven to not only make day-to-day caregiving tasks easier through its feature rich suite, it also tracks patient behaviors through integrated medical devices that capture blood oxygen, pulse, glucose, and heart rate readings- all within the one application.

With plans to expand its brand into a fully integrated, physiological device set, CareSentinel will tackle some of healthcare’s biggest challenges such as congestive heart failure, high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes beginning with its glucose monitor.

CareSentinel is an affordable solution that provides caregivers with user-friendly technology which is easy to adopt and implement — without expensive monthly fees. Powered by only two AAA batteries, CareSentinel allows caregivers over 150 feet of wireless freedom on a full year of battery life starting at a cost under $100.

With a growing market demand, CareSentinel bridges the gap between caregiving and technology, one patient at a time. Each system offers a social element to the caregiver/patients relationship and provides solutions for every call, bed, and home setup.