Serenity Engage CEO Katherine Wells recently sat down with Erica Sandberg, a reporter for CreditCards.com, to discuss her experiences with family caregiving in honor of National Family Caregivers Month.
A snippet of the interview is below, or click here to read the full interview in CreditCards.com to find out how Katherine’s experiences helping to take care of her parents was the genesis for Serenity Engage.
The below interview was originally posted in the CreditCards.com Small Business Credit Profiles column.
November is National Family Caregivers Month, a time to honor individuals and business owners who help people who require care assistance.
Caregivers may be family members or professionals working in senior living facilities, group homes or medical settings. And even for those receiving professional care, the duty of coordination and communication with the provider usually falls on a loved one. The work, while gratifying, is often physically and emotionally draining for everyone involved.
Katherine Wells is familiar with the life of a caregiver. When her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, she stepped in. And when her father needed physical assistance, she took care of him as well.
Today Wells is CEO of Serenity Engage, a care coordination platform headquartered in Denver. Before launching the platform in January 2020, she worked as a software marketing executive for 28 years.
Serenity Engage streamlines the communication process, ensuring that everyone involved in a senior’s care is on the same page in real time. The HIPAA-compliant platform connects care providers and loved ones, allowing everyone to communicate and collaborate efficiently. It’s also educational, integrating how-to videos demonstrating things like how to transfer a person into and out of a wheelchair.
The need is great, and it’s increasing every day. “There’s a big demographic shift,” says Wells. “Baby boomers are aging, with 10,000 people in the U.S. turning 65 every day. Adult children usually step into the role of family caregiver or care coordinator, and there are 39 million who are family caregivers today. In the next 15 years, 55 million people will need aging services.”
Until now, the communications processes have been cumbersome and old-fashioned, relying on telephone exchanges. According to Wells, senior care is one of the last industries to be modernized. Many employees are dedicated but low-paid workers who are stretched thin. Meanwhile, family members are trying to keep up with what’s happening, too. The impetus for Wells’s business was to make the process easier for all involved.
“We focus on the family experience,” says Wells. “Relatives can ask for photos and really get a window into treatment, services and activities that are occurring in their loved one’s day.”