COVID-19 has highlighted the urgent need for sustained investment in health innovations that address the needs of vulnerable populations in resource-constrained settings. During the initial stages of the pandemic, many innovators demonstrated their ability to quickly adapt their innovations to respond to the pandemic. This panel session will feature several Grand Challenges Canada portfolio companies […]
The 65-and-older population in the United States has an annual purchasing power of $2.6 trillion. This fact has driven some exciting innovation over the past decade around healthcare and caregiving for seniors, from telehealth to remote patient monitoring tools.
But the startup sector – including entrepreneurs and investors – has largely misjudged the market demand for innovation focused on older adults’ sense of independence, their need for support and community, or their desire to stay intellectually engaged and have fun. Average life expectancy has shot up in the past few decades, now sitting at 83 for men and 85 for women. Alone at home or transitioned to assisted living, older adults too often feel disengaged and separated from friends, dependent on children and caregivers, unable to feel independent.
This panel will build on learnings from Village Capital and the SCAN Foundation’s report, Redesigning the Ecosystem for Aging Adults, which found a market gap of startups building products and services to help older adults stay engaged. The report found that the percentage of startups working on health care was significantly higher than consumer spending. At the same time, the percentage of startups working on improving engagement for older adults was significantly lower.
Kelly Bryan, Manager, Sustainability Practice, Village Capital
Avi Deutsch, Managing Partner, Vodia Ventures
John Zapolski, Vice President of Innovations, SCAN Foundation
Liz Hamburg, Founder and President, Candoo