Singapore is about to get hit hard by a silver tsunami. By 2030, the local elderly population is expected to soar to 900,000, so it is no exaggeration to say that innovation in the eldercare is urgently needed.
Singapore-based social impact incubator UNFRAMED wants to tackle that growing pain point. It first called for applications for its UNAGING Incubation programme at the beginning of this year. 60 startups applied and only six were accepted.
Each successful startup will go through an intensive five-month programme which includes mentorship, workshops and access to a cross-sector ecosystem of partner organisations and individuals. Duke-NUS Centre for Ageing Research & Education (CARE) will also dedicate two researchers to help the startups assess their social impact.
With regards to cash incentives, the startups will each receive a seed funding of S$10,000 (US$7,400).
Larry Tchiou, Founder and CEO of UNFRAMED said in an official press release: “We have been helping committed entrepreneurs to translate promising ideas into actual impact in the community. With the support of great partners such as DBS Foundation, IDA Labs and the National Youth Council (NYC), we are providing these changemakers with the necessary foundations to build sustainable enterprises through technology, so they can scale their impact in Singapore and throughout the region.”
Without further adieu, here are the six startups:
This startup is developing a concierge service GetPills which aims to help elderly with multiple medical prescriptions purchase and consume medicine easily; medication is packed into individual sachets that are organised by date and time. This helps the elderly to differentiate the pills and prevent improper consumption. It is looking to partner with private clinics at this juncture.
This app aims to ease the burden of professional caregivers by creating easy access to nursing plans, automatically customised based on a family’s care requirements. It has already established partnerships with non-profit caregiver support groups and potentially two healthcare organisations.
This is gesture-based gaming platform that aims to help elderly folks maintain their ability to perform daily tasks or track rehabilitation progress. The sensors in its smart gloves track gestures and muscle strength and generates health measurements and progress reports at the end of each game.
Everyone needs a little music in their lives and Hosebo’s Groovee device and app allows the elderly to transform their physical interactions (for example, shaking or moving the phone in a horizontal motion) with smartphones into music. Currently, it features traditional instruments and songs, which would be more popular for people in their age group. It has already been trialled at several old folks homes.
Memento Health’s Goldilocks is an app developed for tablets. It features exercise videos, sing-a-long sessions, as well as brain-stimulating games. Goldilocks also allows caregivers and therapists to track the performance of patients with dementia.
The Goldilocks prototype has already been tested with psychologists and therapists from National Neuroscience Institute and Alzhemier’s Disease Association.
Senior Active is a web platform that provides rehabilitation services for the elderly by partnering with schools and engaging volunteers. It trains the volunteers to conduct exercises with the elderly. In addition, it wants to give the elderly extra income by having them conduct authentic heritage dish cooking classes. Senior Active claims the cooking programme has had glowing reviews from 100 clients so far.