MobileHelp first began its foray into the elder care technology industry with a system that allowed its customers a way to seek help through pushing a button on pendants worn around their necks. But in only a few short years, this company has expanded its offerings of elder care technology to include medical alert technology that can detect falls without the use of a button and can help prevent them, as well.
MobileHelp was founded in 2006 at the research park at Florida Atlantic University and today has more than 100,000 customers in all fifty states across the country. The company generated nearly $18.7 million in revenue in 2013 and sales growth of 3,305% over the last three years. To support its rapid growth and new ideas, the company has raised another $15 million from investors this year.
The overarching vision of MobileHelp is to empower the elderly to live more safely on their own while simultaneously easing the worries of their loved ones. “We wanted to move away from being a completely reactive system to being more proactive and really providing service to the customer besides just waiting for a bad event to happen,” said Robert Flippo, CEO of the company.
When MobileHelp started, research showed that nearly half of elderly falls occur outside of the home. It moved away from stationary home-based stations like what is used in LifeAlert and towards a more mobile solution. The company became the first in the industry to introduce a mobile device for seniors who wanted to access emergency assistance but who were also active.
Within the last year, the company also introduced a new product, the Fall Button. Worn as a neck pendant that possesses motion signal processing technology, it can detect a fall immediately. No press of an emergency button is required. This technology was key for the company because research has shown that in eighty percent of elderly falls the person cannot press the button for help.
New MobileHelp App
The company is expanding its medical technology through the development of its new app, MobileHelp Connect. The new application for smart phones can alert authorized family members or caregivers of emergencies, provides location information to caregivers, and can even offer verbal notifications to take medication for its customers. The app’s most recent update added a new feature for its customers: a tracker that monitors activity levels and gives caregivers reports.
Medical Alert Industry
According to industry research, the medical alert industry is expected to grow from $1.23 billion in 2013 to $2 billion in 2020. Personal alert systems that offer wellness-focused monitoring systems as well as social connectedness technologies are predicted to grow in market share from fifteen percent in 2012 to 61% in 2017.
This makes sense given the current underlying trends of the U.S. elderly. In the United States, there will be more than 74 million people aged 65 or older by 2020, and seniors continue to become more tech-savvy. In addition, the Affordable Care Act has hospitals and health networks looking for ways to maintain medical oversight for their patients while simultaneously keeping them out of the hospital.