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Tired of the gimmicks, Healthtech needs to get its act together

The Covid-19 pandemic has meant that health and particularly social care delivery is under public scrutiny like never before. The long-standing promise of technology to help has largely failed to deliver, but much like the British weather, we continue to hope for the best. When caring for older and vulnerable adults this means there is a need to address the challenge of ensuring all stakeholders’ needs are taken into account, including the individual, their family, carers, and medical professionals. Far too many healthtech platforms fail to account for the physical and design needs of the User and rely on delivery through smartphone and tablet apps which offer a sub-optimal experience for older adults. This is why Kraydel has spent the past three years working with care professionals and end-users to design and build Konnect, a system which Khalid Ali, a senior lecturer in Geriatrics recently referred to as ‘revolutionary’. The Konnect platform is unique and stands alone as the only system which caters for all stakeholders by bringing together friends and family, health professionals, and carers through simple, user-centric technology which:

  • Promotes family inclusion in care

  • Removes the need for training and having to learn something new

  • Augments into the current ways of working for health and care professionals

  • Provides reliable real-time data, anomaly detection, and AI to better target support and scarce resources

At its core, Konnect uses the most common household device, the user’s own TV to enable video calling to enable simple telehealth, medication reminders, appointment scheduling, health alerts, and smart remote well-being monitoring. We have been overwhelmed by demand since launch, with our customers and partners spanning the NHS, Councils, and some of the largest national charities who see our emphasis on personalized care, including the ability to share relevant personalised content with Users as setting us apart. Through Konnect we’ve now also enabled supporters to upload bespoke videos, relevant to the Users’ particular relevant diagnosis. With content available on-demand it can be viewed and rewatched at the Users’ convenience. The ability to upload videos and photos also enables family and supporters in their network to upload clips and content. Whether it be a video from a grandchild’s birthday party, a recording of the Sunday church service, or old family photos – these can be shared digitally from anywhere in the world straight to the older adult TV. So, just because they can’t be there in person, doesn’t mean they cannot join in. There has also been significant demand for improved use of data to make proactive care interventions. We’ve worked with technology partners across the sector to integrate a range of IoT and healthcare devices, including auto-pair medical-grade thermometers, oximeters, blood pressure monitors, and weighing scales. We’ve combined third party technology along with Kraydel’s proprietary AI and data algorithms to develop a personalized dashboard where carers, doctors, and health professionals can see an aggregated view of all relevant data to provide a single version of the truth. Konnect is the broadest IoT platform that exists anywhere today. This approach to collaboration between technology innovators and the resulting democratization of data and insights will help to promote more consistent use of health data across multi-disciplinary core care pathways. The Konnect Dashboard also enables notifications and alerts as well as the setting of health parameters for smart reporting and escalation e.g. if a blood pressure reading is outside of the expected range, Konnect will automatically highlight this and escalate to the professional carer. A recent Age Action panel highlighted three key barriers to digital adoption amongst older adults and their supporters:

  • Internet access varies by location and income.

  • Older adults lack comfort and confidence using tech.

  • Funders/ Subscribers don’t always like tech-dependent solutions due to perceived complexity and lack of personalisation and interoperability between solutions.

The Konnect system enables video calling through the Users’ TV, thereby putting older adults at ease and overcoming anxiety and fear of new technologies. Konnect’s automatic privacy shutter also ensures the camera is only ever visible and active when the user is making or taking a video call. Using the TV overcomes the physical limitations of handheld tablets and smartphones including difficulties with touch screens, charging issues, fatigue from handling the device, and suboptimal call experience. TV-based telehealth provides the ability to see not just the User but also their environment and surroundings in a way that a smartphone doesn’t because of the limited field of view when the device is close to the Users’ face. Lastly, to overcome connectivity concerns we’ve now modified Konnect to be both Wifi and 4G enabled; with its auto-paired wearable and IoT devices, the Konnect, therefore, becomes a digital Hub – reducing digital exclusion.

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