Made in NYC : eCaring
Last year, over 40 innovator teams submitted proposals for health pilot projects to Pilot Health Tech NYC. eCaring was one of 10 winning projects.
In conjunction with Pace University, eCaring was able to test its new web-based care management and monitoring system among Henry Street Settlement's retirement community in the Lower East Side.
Founder and CEO Robert Herzog talked to us about the need for this new type of patient monitoring system, the talent he's looking for, and why eCaring is proud to be in NYC.
What problem is eCaring trying to solve?
We're determining how to keep the elderly and chronically ill at home and out of the hospital.
By generating comprehensive, real-time personal health information from patients' homes for the first time, eCaring fills the missing link in care management: actionable health care data from the home that connects the patient, their family, and care providers in new and meaningful ways.
eCaring integrates behavioral and clinical data in real time, enabling hospitals, health care providers, and families to track and respond to conditions and intervene early so that small problems don't deteriorate into big ones. The icon-based system allows home aides, family caregivers, or patients themselves to enter data ranging from sleep patterns, to the use of medicines, to feelings such as dizziness or depression, regardless of language or computer literacy.
Using eCaring helps substantially lower care costs, improves care quality, and reduces hospital admissions. We're proud of that.
What is your company’s mantra?
“The best way to deal with a crisis is to avoid it in the first place.”
Many patient monitoring systems only help providers and family respond to adverse events after the event has already happened—when it may already be too late. eCaring creates customized, real-time alerts that allow care managers to respond to situations requiring immediate attention. For example, one high-risk, frail, elderly patient, who historically visited the ER multiple times per month for high blood sugar, hasn’t visited the ER once since using eCaring. Alerts from eCaring enabled care managers to address the problem immediately with the caregiver over the phone, avoiding trauma to the patient and thousands of dollars in health care costs.
What qualities do you look for in employees?
As an early-stage company disrupting the deeply ingrained world of health care, the top requirement we look for is top-notch problem solving skills and the ability to think creatively. We look for smart people who know how to roll up their sleeves and work hard. It’s very important that new hires share a passion for improving health care and are aligned with our mission.
Does eCaring have any company traditions?
Every year we have a “Launchpad” event—a two-day intensive where we bring the entire company together to discuss our strategic development and goals. It’s a valuable opportunity to dive deeply into our goals, brand, and mission.
What is eCaring’s biggest accomplishment?
In a recent trial with frail elders in the Bronx, use of eCaring prevented ER visits, hospitalizations, doctor visits, and unplanned nurse visits, saving an average of $2,500 per patient, per month. Our high user engagement is another area we are proud of: In-home caregivers enter between 300 and 1,000 data points per patient per month.
In 2013, we were honored to be a winner of NYCEDC’s PILOT Health Tech program in conjunction with Pace University. Through the program, we were able to launch eCaring Independent, which brought real-time monitoring to isolated, multi-cultural seniors living in public housing at the Henry Street Settlement on the Lower East Side.
What is the best part about working for eCaring?
We’re a fast-growing company that is changing the way health care works each and every day. Until now, there’s been no way to generate real-time information from patient’s homes, but eCaring has broken open that black box. In doing so, we can have a real, valuable impact on potentially millions of people's lives. We care about care.
Why New York City?
We’re a company created by New Yorkers. Since our inception, we’ve worked with the NYC health care community and their care populations to demonstrate our system’s profound impact.
As a technology-based health care company, we value being richly connected to the burgeoning New York City health IT community, the atmosphere of innovation and expansion, and having access to great talent and world renowned health care institutions.
Favorite place in the city to nosh?
We love City Winery on Varick Street. The food, the atmosphere, the wine—it’s all amazing!
Any advice for recruits/college graduates?
Conduct yourself as a professional. You communicate things about yourself and your qualities in everything that you do from your resume to emails to the way you dress. A professional presentation is extremely important to command respect for yourself and your skills, especially as a young professional or if you are new to the field.