With the pandemic running amok, we are hearing tragic stories every day. While some struggle for basic amenities, others are worried about their loved ones.
Imagine being in another city or stuck in another country on the other side of the world with your parents or elders in India. With all the resources available, you might still feel guilty and inadequate as you are unable to be there in person to take care of them.
Hiring a domestic helper might not cut it, you need someone who understands what you are going through and deals with you with empathy and compassion. You want the best for your loved ones, but how can you assure that the person who can be called in to help will have a similar kind of human touch?
While frontline medical warriors try to save the nation, many small enterprises and individuals are making the effort to help people in their own way.
And we, at FlexiBees, want to honour and amplify their effort by sharing their stories.
What they do
Many people assume that elder care is synonymous with only health care, but this is not quite true. Whilst health care is a crucial need of seniors, they also have other needs that often go unserved. Think of their daily pain areas - visits to the bank, getting their passport renewed, completing visa applications, sorting out fused bulbs or leaking taps - all these tasks can seem daunting and overwhelming for them. And if you add the threat of a pandemic to it, it takes on a whole new avatar.
senOcare steps in to take care of elders with whatever they need. Their services include taking care of different aspects of the needs of seniors, including,
- Health & Fitness: reputed healthcare professionals, diagnostic labs and pharmacies who deliver top quality health care to elders at their doorstep
- Home security & Maintenance: repairs and breakdowns and making regular upkeep smooth and hassle-free
- Tours & Travel: booking of tickets to wheelchair assistance at the airport; from renewal of passport to issue of forex; they take care of everything
- Forms & Filing: Any forms, applications or legal paperwork that needs to be done, including, income tax filing, banking assistance, writing of Will etc
- Technology & Troubleshooting: empowering seniors to make them comfortable with common apps and gadgets.
- Memories & Milestones: from planning special events and making beautiful memories - they help you with ideas and then execute them to perfection
As a client, you will be assigned a Care Manager who becomes your one point of contact. The communication channels are open between the client (adults who are overseas or in a different city), their elderly loved ones in India and the Care Manager.
As Sanjana puts it, “At senOcare, we believe in the power of human touch. Our Care Managers make a concerted effort to tune into not just the elder who is our member, but into the entire family, and work hard to create a meaningful and engaging relationship where the elder ends up feeling very comfortable and the family feels hugely supported.”
In these COVID times...
In the current scenario, senOcare is doing its best to be there for the seniors in every possible way.
Given the tough times that people are going through, they get calls from frazzled and panicked adults who are sitting miles away from their parents or loved ones and need immediate assistance in some form or the other.
One clear differentiator is that instead of inquiry calls being handled by automated chatbots or junior interns or assistants, they are handled by senior management, so that client needs can be assessed in real time and solutions can be provided promptly and efficiently.
‘During Covid times, most people call us in an utter state of panic. We listen patiently, understand the situation and then offer solutions that we know we can deliver. In case we don’t have a solution for a particular situation, like help with getting a hospital bed, etc. we try our best to calm the person on the line and to direct them towards other local resources we know of..’ shares Sanjana. They also check back later to see whether the patient was able to receive the care they required.
One of the things they noticed during this second wave is the shortage of nurses who can come home to perform or monitor certain medical procedures like giving an injection or putting in an IV line or a catheter. This is more amplified as hospitals and the medical fraternity are being pushed to their limits and are working endless hours.
While talking to their clients, the founders realised that many patients may not actually need a full time nurse, and could manage with a medical attendant (A medical attendant is a well-trained helper who can be an effective caretaker but cannot perform medical procedures), especially in cases where the patient needs to taking care of daily routines like bathing, feeding, dressing, reminding them to take timely medications, etc. Also - hiring a full-time nurse is an expensive affair that many families cannot afford for prolonged periods of time.
AS a solution, they launched a new service called ‘Nurse On Call’ where the nurse will come in when required, perform the medical procedures that are mandated but will not stay the whole day. The nurse can check with the clients even multiple times a day. For example if there are injections that need to be given in the morning and evening, the nurse will come in at that hour and administer the injection and leave.
The medical attendant then can take over after the nurse finishes her tasks. This helped them mobilize their staff better and also made it more pocket-friendly for their clients, as the nurse was required only for an hour or two as opposed to a full-day engagement.
Apart from this, they also provide oxygen concentrators on rent as they are expensive to buy and one may not need them in the long term, especially after the patient’s recovery.
They organize online consultations with doctors (both general physicians and specialists from reputed hospitals) and can also set up an ICU at home if needed.
The team at senOcare can even run errands like picking up your medication and delivering at your doorstep or assisting an elder to go for a lab test or a CT scan. A car and a care manager will be sent with all the safety precautions taken.
Here is what some of these families have to say:
‘They are highly resourceful and a very caring team. When my father contracted Covid, we urgently needed an attendant to take care of him - in terms of monitoring his vitals, oxygen levels, giving him medications and things like that. And within a few hours, we had a 24-hour attendant who was looking after my father! And after a while, my father wanted his reading glasses and some reading material. But we could not get it to him as we were not allowed. But within 90min, the senOcare team reached my home, took my father’s glasses and reading material from my mum and got to my dad through a nurse. And though it might seem big - it was so important for my dad as he was losing his mind without it!’
‘Working with senOcare is one the best decisions I have made. Unfortunately, my dad expired recently. My mum lives in Delhi and I am in America. When this happened, I didn’t know what to do. When senOcare stepped in, they were able to not just take care of her needs but provide heavy emotional support to her. Whatever she needs - dealing with the bank or fixing something at home, she first calls senOcare before me! I highly recommend their services.’
‘Thank you so much senOcare team for your timely services. My experience with senOcare has been delightful because they provided me with a trustworthy, family-friendly, well trained medical attendant for my uncle. There was a regular checking of vitals which was conveyed to me - BP, temperature, sugar, oxygen and the full-fledged help made him recover within a week. Though we had paid for the service for two weeks, the payment for the remaining one week was refunded immediately. A big thank you to senOcare’s team’
Next big step:
‘We are being inundated with requests to expand to other cities including Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru. We strongly believe in exemplary service that is executed to perfection, and that means getting the best teams together to deliver outstanding service. For now, we are focussing on serving the people of Delhi NCR, but yes, expansion plans will follow.’, shares Sanjana.
During these stress-ridden difficult times, if you are looking for a trusted, tailor-made solution to take care of your elders, then do check out senOcare
. Call or WhatsApp the senOcare team on 8800 700 100