Living independently as an older person carries risks. One in four Americans aged 65 and older falls each year, according to the National Council on Aging, and every 19 minutes an older adult dies from a fall. Health ailments like urinary tract infections (UTI) become increasingly common in old age, too, accounting for about 8.1 million physician visits each year. And it’s not just physical problems caregivers and older patients have to worry about — mental illnesses like depression affect an estimated 7 million older adults annually.
That’s why 30-year tech veteran and former IBM consultant Satish Movva founded CarePredict, a Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based health tech startup that aims to improve seniors’ quality of life with machine learning-driven wearables. CarePredict claims its platform can surface actionable insights that predict a UTI up to 3.7 days ahead of clinical diagnosis and depression two weeks ahead of diagnosis. The startup also claims it has managed to reduce falls by 25 percent in senior communities.
Those stats have investors impressed, it seems. CarePredict today announced that it has secured $9.5 million in Series A financing led by Secocha Ventures, Las Olas Ventures, and Startup Health Ventures. This brings its total raised to $19.7 million, following a $4 million seed fund round in December 2017 and a grant from the National Science Foundation.
A chunk of CarePredict’s change — about $110,000 — was spent this year on the acquisition of WiseWare, a startup that sold activity-tracking jewelry for older users in stores like Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s, and Nordstrom. However, Movva says the fresh capital will be used to focus squarely on CarePredict’s expansion overseas and its imminent direct-to-consumer product launch.
“With over 600 million people worldwide over the age of 65 years and a rapidly diminishing caregiving population, technology like ours is efficiently bridging the gap and ensuring that our loved ones get the constant, quality care they need and deserve,” Movva said in a statement. “Recognizing these challenges, our solution has been built to predict rather than detect through continuous observation and to do so with the least human effort.”
To that end, CarePredict’s premiere product — Tempo — is a wrist-worn bracelet sporting a touch-button sensor and built-in microphone and speaker, along with sensors that detect what Movva calls activities of daily living (ADL). With the aid of sophisticated AI algorithms, Tempo’s able to sense ADLs such as eating, drinking, bathing, grooming, tooth-brushing, toilet use, walking, sitting, sleeping, and more and to communicate wirelessly with peel-and-stick beacons to pinpoint the rooms in which those activities are occurring.
The Tempo takes about seven days to learn a wearer’s normal activity patterns, and it serves up the data it continuously collects through real-time alerts, web-based dashboards, and self-serve reports. Urgent items — like when a wearer enters a restricted area or spends too much time in the bathroom — are sent immediately to care staff via the web, email, text, and CarePredict’s mobile app, while trends like infrequent eating get highlighted on a daily health and wellness report.
CarePredict is currently available in the U.S. and Canada for assisted, memory care, independent living, and home care, with service expected to launch in Japan, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, China, and Germany “soon.”
Close to 10 senior living chains are already using or plan to use the platform, Movva says. CarePredict recently signed a multiyear agreement with Spring Creek Enterprise to install its Tempo system at a new assisted living community in Anchorage, Alaska. It has also committed to collaborating with SRI Management on a new assisted living center in Ocala, Florida and announced that Tradition Senior Living would use Tempo in two facilities that collectively provide care to close to 600 residents.
Also notable: In December, CarePredict was one of five companies awarded the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) Foundation’s Accessibility Contest.
“By measuring the activities of daily living of assisted living and memory care residents, the staff and management team of senior living communities will be able to identify valuable health care insights and be more proactive in delivering superior care. [They will also be able to] raise resident satisfaction and drive revenues, along with increased average length of stays,” Movva said.
A consumer version of Tempo will make its formal debut at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in January and become available in the coming months. Movva declined to reveal the cost structure, but to potential investors CarePredict once floated a price of $169 per Tempo sensor with a monthly monitoring fee of nearly $30 per month.