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All over the world, people are living longer than ever. Many elderly people want to live independently, but still need some assistance to stay safe. While older people used to be able to rely on relatives for help, nowadays families often live too far away or have too many commitments to offer day-to-day support.
Social care services can help fill the gap, but they’re coming under more and more strain as the elderly population grows. Caregivers are increasingly time pressured and often weighed down by complex administration. If nothing changes, elderly people may be put in danger by their social care provision being spread too thin.
At Karantis360, we knew it didn’t have to be this way, especially in today’s mobile and connected world. That’s why we developed a mobile application to support caregivers with the information they need to provide excellent service and to connect families with their elderly relatives.
Finding an accommodating platform
However, Karantis360 had a problem: the existing cloud services provider did not support multi-device use or the high level of security that our app demanded. Caregivers often share or use more than one smartphone or tablet. They also deal with very sensitive data that must be constantly secured.
The company’s leaders decided to look for a new provider that could deliver the best security, scalability and flexibility possible.
We teamed up with IBM, moving the application to the IBM Cloud platform. This gave us the flexibility and security that it required. Working with IBM also opened up a host of new opportunities to take our solution to the next level.
IBM introduced us to EnOcean GmbH, an Internet of Things (IoT) specialist that provides self-powered movement, door, pressure, humidity and water sensors to monitor elderly clients unobtrusively. This means caregivers can track when clients get up in the morning and go to bed, visit the bathroom, use kitchen facilities, or leave the house, all while respecting their privacy.
By aggregating data collected from the sensors on the IBM Watson IoT Platform, Karantis360 can build a picture of each individual’s typical behavior patterns. The application identifies any deviations from routine that could indicate that something is wrong and warn clients, caregivers and family members through a web and mobile dashboard. They can then check up on the client by telephone or in person.
For example, the app can detect if a client has a fall, enabling care providers to send help quickly, which makes a huge difference. Similarly, for clients with Alzheimer’s or dementia, caregivers can recognize when a client might be putting themselves at risk and intervene.
Providing care around the world
The IoT and AI capabilities we’ve gained from IBM have helped us bring something truly new to the market. Elderly people can live independently for longer, and caregivers can provide better service exactly when it’s needed. Hospitals can release patients earlier knowing that they’re being monitored at home. Families can be confident their relatives are being well looked after. This enhanced service enables care providers to strengthen their offerings and competitive position.
Working with IBM has given Karantis360 the flexibility to grow in so many ways. The app would not have been successful unless it worked securely on multiple devices and operating systems. This capability is what first drew us to IBM. On top of this, the scalability of the IBM Cloud will give the company room to grow, adding capacity quickly and easily as new clients come on board. The IBM data center network has a global reach, which will help Karantis360 enter new markets, and IBM resources and knowledge regarding the data storage rules between countries will be invaluable.
It looks like we’ll need this growth capability, as we’re already seeing huge interest from care providers around the world. With the IBM global reputation behind us, we have been able to gain traction in the industry very quickly, helping us bring efficient social care to elderly people everywhere.
Read the case study for more details.