What is the Idea?
Elders and the rapidly aging within the nation will receive the connection to resources and support that they need in a manner that enables them to Live Well independently within the community and supported by the community.
Live Well is a platform that will enable individuals and those who support them to meet their ongoing needs through a community network and that harnesses the potential of technology to integrate their support within the communities in which they live.
What will change in the world because this project happened?
As care delivery is increasing pushed out of acute care facilities, as people are able to live longer with the assistance of chronic care treatments, and as the population ages, there is a need to improve access to social services for social services professionals, family/caregivers, and the individuals who need external support to Live Well in the community.
We aspire to promote people's independence and ability to live in the least restrictive environment possible. When adequate resources don't exist, people require "placement" into places where their needs can be met. A huge gap exists in the availability of place as well for people who do not require such restrictive measures, yet still need assistance to meet their daily needs. At this juncture, our country lacks the infrastructure capacity to "care" for people "in facilities," which necessitates developing means to support people who require assistance to Live Well in the community.
Live Well will provide a technology platform to fill the capacity gap in a democratized way while supporting our deepest aspirations for promoting liberty to all and the pursuit of happiness throughout all stages of life.
What information will people interact with to make this change?
Live Well will create a virtual nexus for connecting social services with the public in a dynamic way and will enable actual meeting of needs for people who require assistance.
e.g. Mrs. Jane Hammond, an 87 year old widow, lives alone and is assisted by neighbors. A neighbor creates a Live Well profile for "Mrs. J" and the profile enables the neighbor to see what social services exist for Mrs. J's needs within her city. The profile also links into programs like "neighborhoods" on facebook. The neighbor is able to indicate on the profile that Mrs. J needs some cat food, that request pushes to the "neighborhoods" application and another person who lives within a few blocks but doesn't know Mrs. J is going to the pet store and picks up cat food for Mrs. J. As, well the neighbor indicates that Mrs. J needs a quart of milk. A young professional stops at the grocery store en route home and using his iPhone checks local grocery store needs from Live Well, his grandparents use it in Ohio and he isn't there so helps other folks out locally. Finding Mrs. J's request under "grocery needs in your area," he picks up an extra quart of milk and drops it by her house on the way home. Reimbursement can integrated with a credit/debit network established directly to the stores and integrated to interface with Medi-aid and Medi-care. Community service effort may be credited to the individuals through a "time bank" system and/or employer recognition for companies that encourage participation by their employees as "in kind" donations.
Live Well uses technology to facilitate meeting social support both through virtual connections and "live" connections. Live Well disrupts and innovates the way we live in and think about our "communities" by creating a platform that bridges the virtual community world and integrates it with our residential community, that bridges the communities of needs with the resources for benefits, and that brings people together across boundaries to care for our community wellness.
While this is local in the sense of meeting needs peculiar to the way of western development, transience, and independence, as more people become geographically mobile and the displacement of people from larger family structure trickles into the developing world as the unintended (untold) cost of industrialization and 'economic opportunity,' the development of this kind of platform will be universally applicable.
What else have you done in this cause area?
This is an area that is ripe to grow. There is a real need for harnessing technology to meet the needs of those already aged, most importantly for those entering into this group. I am involved in bioethics, mediation, elder care plan facilitation and elder ethics issues, and I am particularly focused on the needs and concerns of marginalized populations.
I worked under the leadership of an ex-IDEO health innovation startegist and product designer as part of the product development team at ePatients.com, a web 1.0 company that sought to create products and services for patients and their families in the acute and post-acute care setting. Following the implosion of that company (not due to the product/fundability), the product development team co-founded a venture to support patient adherence in the chronic care market through user-focused design of a web-based platform, but the market bust at that time made funding impossible although people "got" the value and concept, the profits margins weren't big enough and the SE world only in its nascent stages focused primarily on education.
At this juncture, I envision this application could be developed as a stand alone or integrated into a portfolio of another company.
What inspired you?
An awareness that we are only as strong as the weakest among us and that though in the West, we fear aging, it is simply another process in the beautiful mystery of life. If we continue to deny it and fail to make the resources available to make this time of life one of possibility, the only people we fail are ourselves. I also see the grave economic disparities between our life in the West and those in other countries, and the influence of outsourcing and industrialization means that we are exporting an economic system that breaks down the social structure of those countries. It is my hope that if we can learn from those communities how to care for people within our own community and potentially reduce the export of practices that result in the transaction costs of destroyed social networks and/or to use technology to innovate the way we address this problem that exists increasing also in China and other countries.
What do you need at this juncture?
- Funders for initial development through Pilot
- Developers to realize a beta version
- People committed to harnessing technology and resources to meet local community needs as the first step in promoting the global wellness
Live Well by
Planet Well is licensed under a
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