Melbourne Hackathon Targets Aged Care

By Sharon Smith
Monday, 13 July, 2015

The weekend played hosted to a 48-hour hackathon aimed at providing solutions to the health concerns facing today’s ageing population. More than 18 solutions were developed in Melbourne with experts from HealthXL, Victoria’s Northern Health and Alzheimer’s Australia, along with health researchers and technical experts from IBM.
The winners of the event were TeleXHealth who developed a solution which enables elderly people to confidentially share key information about their health – such as weight, blood sugar, blood pressure - via an automated telephone service.  The information is then digitally recorded, analysed and tracked on a dashboard, and can be accessed via a mobile application by the patient, their doctor, family or carer.  The solution enables the patient to be cared for and their health monitored from their own home, removing the need for the patient to make trips to their doctor or hospital for routine health checks.
Other category winners include:
Olive ensures the safety of elderly people driving, enabling them to remain mobile and independent for longer.  By monitoring and tracking information about the vehicle and the driver behaviour, such as location, speed, braking and distant from other vehicles – doctors, carers and family can be confident of the person’s driving ability.
Heston is an online application that can be used by dieticians to create personalised meal plans to help tackle malnutrition in elderly people.  The solution analyses a range of personal information on each patient including previous and current medical history, food likes and dislikes and weight goals.
“This was an amazing weekend.  Talking with the elderly people and age care health experts during the event provided us with great insight, a real-life understanding of their lives and the challenges faced.  We were able to design a solution that we know can be easily used by elderly people, yet provides their carer with the information they need to better manage their health remotely,” said Andreas Limberopoulos, Team Leader at TeleXHealth.
TeleXHealth will work with clinicians and community care providers in the Northern Health hospital network to refine and complete a prototype of their solution for trialling with patient groups. TeleXHealth will also be invited to present their solution to one hundred digital health thought leaders and experts at the next quarterly invite-only HealthXL Global Gathering to be held in Munich in September.
“I am amazed at the entrepreneurial community in Melbourne and the level of collaboration that made this hackathon a big success. We had a diverse group of experts from different backgrounds coming together to tackle and create new solutions around the most common problems in age care.  The judges had a really hard job.  I see many of the solutions created have great potential”, said Martin Kelly, CEO at HealthXL, a global market for health innovations.
You can view the event which was live-tweeted on the hashtag #HXLHACK or through HealthXL’s account @health_xl.
“It was fantastic to experience the energy, fast-paced creativity and innovative thinking of the teams from so many different backgrounds.  All working together, tackling some of the biggest issues in aged care.  The TeleXHealth solution will enable doctors, carers and families to monitor and analyse the health of elderly people in their home.  Reducing the need to visit their doctor or hospital for routine checks and managing patient care in an environment that they feel safe and relaxed in,” said Annette Hicks, IBM ANZ.

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