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BW Businessworld

Care For The Elderly

Digital disruption during the pandemic has resulted in remarkable transformations across industries and the healthcare space is no exception.

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When the pandemic was in full swing, healthcare organisations had to pivot. The healthcare industry did not leave any stone unturned in demonstrating its resilience and ability to bring innovations to the market. Athulya Assisted Living, a first-of-its-kind, premium independent assisted living homes aims to address the issue with commitment and inviolability. Athulya, true to its meaning ‘unique’, is one of the first providers of assisted living with optimum senior living features for elders.

Athulya strives to create a secure, cheerful and grace-filled senior assisted living. Talking about the obvious surge in demand in the market, Karthik Narayan R, Managing Director, Athulya Assisted Living says, “The growth has been significant and enquiries have increased. We witnessed an influx of a volume of more than 30 per cent that resulted in threefold volumes.”

Growth Plans: While opening up about their future geographical expansion plans, Narayan, who is a healthcare strategist and process improvement leader, as well as a trained physician and hospital management expert with more than 10 years of administrative and clinical experience, shared that Athulya is currently present only in Chennai and will be expanding to Hyderabad and Bangalore in the next few months.

Earlier it was unusual for any individual to consult a doctor over a phone call or video conferencing, but today people are comfortable with consulting their healthcare providers and medical professionals over calls or telemedicine platforms. Technology has set new norms and commenting about the same, Narayan adds, “This is a big awakening in the mindset change of the customers, especially the healthcare customers.” Digital disruption during the pandemic has resulted in remarkable transformations across industries and the healthcare space is no exception.

Today, if the businesses are not integrated with technology, it will be difficult to face the numerous challenges posed by competitors. Narayan states, “The younger elderly coming in will be more tech-friendly as it is the need of the hour.” In terms of latest technologies, Athulya has introduced remote and passive sensors instead of just a traditional app to capture key critical information of an elderly patient without any human intervention and other obstacles.

Lockdown Spurt: The growth in the senior living business is attributed primarily to the pandemic but beyond that, the travel ban too has been cited as one of the major catalysts. As children were not able to visit their elderly parents at home during the lockdown, that made the elderly realize the need to take care of themselves when all alone. “We observed, captured, capitalised on the problem that the society faced and are going after it,” Narayan adds.

On winning the BW Businessworld Young Entrepreneur Award, Narayan expressed gratitude as well as resolve to expand, to reach and touch more elderly lives. “Fortunately or unfortunately, it feels like a lonely journey and there is nothing like encouragement and validation. Also, it is perceived well in investor circles,” he adds.

Athulya raised their first round of funding recently. “Earlier it was about number and valuation whereas now in the hybrid model, it is about driving quality, efficiency and scaling up,” Narayan adds.