The push to enable more seniors to stay in their homes rather than move to a nursing home is one of the major trends in healthcare. eCaring is one of several health IT companies focused on the greying market. It has raised $3.5 million in a Series A round for its platform to support aging in place to monitor day-to-day behavior and activities, according to a company statement. The idea is to pick up any changes indicating a decline in patient condition or anything that requires a rapid response.
It taps into the patient monitoring market, which is expected to grow to $20.9 billion by 2016.
Ascent Biomedical Ventures led the round. It invests in seed and early-stage biomedical and healthcare technology companies. Private investor Stephen Jackson also took part in the round and will serve on the board. The funding will provide working capital for eCaring and will be used to support product development as well as to expand sales and marketing efforts. The health IT company wants to reach managed care plans, payers, home health agencies, hospitals and other health care organizations.
The CareTracker program is designed to let aides or caregivers record clinical data and behavioral health as well. Although the emoticons from the screenshot make it look more like a game than a monitoring tool, simplicity is key. The idea is to make the technology simple enough so that people with different levels of computer literacy can easily use the program. Icons are used to indicate the time a person has eaten, used the toilet, exercised, and his or her mood and energy level. It also uses more subtle gauges for mood like reading, worship and listening to music. The information is used to help establish a baseline for what’s normal for that person to facilitate earlier intervention to avoid problems at home.
The company was founded and is led by Robert Herzog. Last year it was selected to take part in commercialization program PILOT Health Tech NYC. It worked with Pace University to test its care management program in a retirement community.