August 25: Many senior citizens living in Pune, Mumbai, and Hyderabad are now starting to enjoy the comfort and convenience of employing an elder care service, especially since this concept is quite new to India. Elder care used to be a segment which was unexplored, uncatered to, and untouched by big brands, especially tech companies, but this has been recently changed by companies such as Yodda, founded by Tarun Sharma.
Prior to entering the elder care space, Tarun spent over two decades working in the software industry and leading multiple IT organizations. Much of this time was spent abroad. Unfortunately, after returning to India, both of his parents suffered from critical health problems, to which they eventually succumbed. During his experiences, he not only noticed the inorganization of the Indian healthcare system, but also how much care and time must be invested to care for an ailing loved one. He soon realized that he was one of the few Indians who was able to be with their parents in their old age – hundreds of thousands of them are living away from their parents in different cities and countries. And many of these professionals could soon see themselves in a similar situation to Tarun’s, however, not all of them would be able to return to be with their parents. The thought of helping to solve this problem led to the birth of Yodda.
The elder care company is headquartered in Pune and has recently expanded into Mumbai, Thane, Navi Mumbai, Hyderabad and Secunderabad. They are the first elder care service in India which offers a tech-based platform for elders to receive help at the tap of a button. Yodda offers end-to-end services in the cities where they have on-ground operations, right from 24/7 emergency management & healthcare services, to home maintenance & convenience services. Elders can trigger emergencies using different devices like phones, smart watches, GPS pendants and intelligent assistants like Siri. Once an emergency is triggered, Yodda is alerted immediately through its manned Emergency Command Centre, looked over by meticulously trained military veterans who are adept at handling all types of emergencies. Yodda’s tech platforms & processes ensure that no time is lost and that all situationsarebrought under control immediately.
Since its beginning, Yodda has successfully saved the lives of numerous senior citizens with their emergency services by ensuring elders get immediate assistance and attention when requested. Their children also get peace of mind knowing that there is a professional organisation taking care of their aging parents when they are oceans away. Many times, even their daily wellbeing calls have helped Yodda find out if an elder was going through ahealth concern. A simple mention of a chest pain has led to immediate intervention, stopping these situations from cascading into critical life-threatening emergencies. Apart from their services in this area, Yodda also caters to the routine requests that elders may have. “Yodda is the company that works as the dutiful child of elders, whose children may not be with them. Yodda provides services that a parent would typically call a child, or a trusted loved one for. Right from ensuring their safety in an emergency, to comfort with health-related issues, and routine tasks such as bill payments and home repairs, Yodda is always standing by to attend to their needs.”, said Tarun.
87-year-old Divakar Kadam(name changed to protect privacy) recalls this incident, “On a routine well being call, I informed Yodda of slight discomfort in my chest. Yodda immediately sent an emergency responder to my house and insisted on a quick check up at a hospital. I thought this was unnecessary, but at the hospital, we found out that I was suffering from advanced heart disease that needed to be operated upon immediately. Timely intervention allowed me to undergo an angioplasty surgery which otherwise would have caused many more complicated issues. Yodda’s emergency responders saved my life that day and if it wasn’t for them, I shudder to imagine what would have happened.”
Pragati Vaidya (name changed) lives in Delhiwith her husband. They both work in the IT sector. Pragati says, “My parents stay in Pune. They are very old. Even though we can fly to Pune in a couple of hours from Delhi, when an emergency strikes my parents, it is the first 30 minutes that really make the difference. I got Yodda’s services for my parents as I know that there is someone to help my parents at their doorstep immediately. It is this that helps us sleep peacefully at night.”
Many of Yodda’s customers also reside outside India. Many NRIs avail their services to take care of their aging parents back home. Yodda also ensures that they are sent real-time updates and continuous communication about how emergencies or routine service requests were handled.
Industry observers say that professional elder care services will streamline this unorganized sector. With more checks and balances coming into play, cases of helpless senior citizens requiring assistance will be provided by organized and reputed companies, in addition to NGOs and government schemes.
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