Retirement

Tech Startup Elder ‘Building’ Forty New UK Care Homes in 2019

Live-in care startup, Elder, ‘built’ the equivalent of 20 care homes last year, is projecting thirty more for 2019.

As the UK care home sectors continue to struggle with a combination of an ageing population, coupled with a lack of funding to get new projects off the ground, Elder is seeing unprecedented growth by using unique technology to make care in the home a suitable alternative.

While financial pressures are forcing traditional care homes to increase size, Elder say they are focused on delivering person-centred care.

The platform uses its matching algorithm to act as an introductory agency, matching professional and vetted live-in carers with families across the UK. This same technology allows them to provide a carer within as little as 24 hours, unprecedented in the sector.

These carers are now operating in over 300 towns and cities nationwide, from south-west England to the Isle of Skye.

As the population continues to age, demand for care will increase and the types of care needed will change. The Office for National Statistics predicts a 36% growth in persons aged 85+ between 2015 and 2025, from 1.5 million to 2 million.

This is expected to lead to a substantial increase in demand for care home services. However, Elder’s platform is changing that.

After only three years, Elder is already the country’s leading specialist for live-in care, and only two months into 2019 it’s already created over five care homes. After showing growth of over 800% between 2017 to 2018, the company was awarded the accolade of ‘the third fastest growing company in the UK’ (according to revenue) by TECH5 at the beginning of 2018.

CEO Pete Dowds, said:

“The growth we’ve seen to date has given us the momentum to propel the company forward through 2019. We’ll add an additional 30 care homes worth of high quality, dedicated care capacity to a system that is actually in decline. Families and local authorities are finally seeing better quality elderly care becoming accessible and affordable.”

And there are benefits for the NHS too; since live-in care leads to better recovery and fewer geriatric hospital readmissions. Additionally, due to the short turn around time of arranging care, the platform can relieve around 60% of delayed transfer of care instances.”

The care homes sector is worth around £15.9 billion a year in the UK, with around 410,000 residents. There are around 5,500 different providers in the UK operating 11,300 care homes for the elderly. Around 95% of their beds are provided by the independent sector (both for-profit and charitable providers).

LAs generally commission care services from independent care providers. Elder estimate that the average cost for a self-funder in 2016 was £846 per week (nearly £44,000 per year), while LAs on average paid £621 per week.

As the population continues to age, demand for care will increase and the types of care needed will change. The Office for National Statistics predicts a 36% growth in persons aged 85+ between 2015 and 2025, from 1.5 million to 2 million. This is expected to lead to a substantial increase in demand for care home services.

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