Like remote working, the pivot to remote healthcare has been accelerated by Covid-19. The latest business to emerge in the industry is HaloCare, an Irish start-up that wants to help older people to ‘age in place’ while travel restrictions continue.
HaloCare launches today (25 November) and will hire for 20 new roles in Carlow. It was founded by entrepreneur David Walsh, electronic engineer Niall Kelly and radiologist Dr Johnny Walker. Walsh and Kelly previously founded CCTV monitoring service Netwatch together.
Walker most recently founded remote medical-imaging firm Global Diagnostics. Now clinical director at HaloCare, he said: “Never before has there been a more compelling time to redesign the way we care for people, and now simple digital technologies allow us to support them around the clock from the safety of their home.
“We are now able to remotely monitor patients, especially those who suffer from chronic illnesses, and keep them out of hospital by identifying very early warning signs of acute exacerbations and instigating appropriate interventions in real time, working closely with their care teams. The ability to remotely monitor vital signs such as blood pressure, blood sugar, pulse oxygen and weight, for example, will lead to a paradigm shift in the way we care for those with chronic illness.”
Through intelligent technologies informed by expert medical advice in real time, HaloCare hopes to help older people to live “a safer, more independent and better quality of life for longer in their own homes”.
It will use contactless AI and machine learning technologies that can be installed in people’s homes to support care workers. These will monitor vital health data, help prevent falls, keep people socially and culturally connected and more. A team of nurses and care specialists will also be available 24/7 from a care hub in Carlow town.
Fixing the ‘forgotten middle ground’ of ageing
HaloCare is recruiting for new staff immediately and plans to hire more next year. It’s looking for people to work at its Carlow care hub as well as in installation and R&D for new technologies to help prevent falls.
Walsh, who is also HaloCare’s CEO, said: “There’s a forgotten middle ground of ageing people in our society: those who are too fit and healthy for nursing home facilities, but nevertheless need a little extra support to enable them to continue living independently in their own homes.
“There’s always a worry for older people living alone; what if they have complications or fall in the middle of the night, or indeed other times when there’s no one there to help? Professional homecare providers do a fantastic job but are often limited to an hour or two per day.
“We are passionate about protecting the independence and dignity of older people, allowing them to age in place and continue to enjoy their day-to-day lives.”
Taoiseach Micheál Martin, TD, welcomed the launch. He encouraged more companies innovating for “wider and deeper support for older and vulnerable people” to come forward.
Walker added: “The evolution of digital diagnostics and remote therapeutics is going to enable the care profession to rise to the challenges in front of us all in a way we could not have previously imagined.”
Keep an eye on HaloCare’s website to learn more about job opportunities.
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