Inspiration

The EasyAgeing team has been inspired by the challenges faced by the senior citizen of our society and their carers when making significant life changes with regards to physical, mental, financial, social, and legal wellbeing. This can be an overwhelming process for individuals and families, therefore our mission is to make the start of this process streamlined and simplified. As a team, we were inspired to assist individuals in seeking out what is available to them in order to remain in their homes for as long as possible. Our federal and state governments are similarly pushing this agenda as a national need, and consumers have shown that this is a want. We have all heard of cases where people reach this life stage, and are completely unprepared to make an informed decision due to the overall lack of resources available.

What it does

Our online platform helps seniors and carers who want to find out more information about services available to them by centralising widespread information and creating greater access to information. This is unlike MyAgedCare, MyGov, Carers Australia, and HSNet Human Services Network which are all fairly specialised in their application. This service will be a questionnaire that leads the user to an end result that will encompass recommendations and further links to information that is relevant to them based on their answers. The platform will collect data and on-sell to service providers as well as request feedback on services listed on the platform to create a report that can also be sold to partners as a source of revenue and to encourage competition, innovation, and improved service delivery benefiting both consumers and businesses.

Because it brings information from many sectors of the aged care industry together, we envision our platform becoming close to a one-stop shop which can integrate into other platforms so that should any eligibility criteria need to be assessed, it can be done within our ecosystem. It helps individuals explore what services, programs, or funding might be available to them given their specific needs and situation that they may have otherwise missed, and also helps carers do the same. Furthermore, it can triage specific high-risk situations such as a lonely, depressed, and suicidal elderly person who may not be receiving the help they need through our targeted questioning, in addition to potential cases of elder abuse which would otherwise go unreported or unnoticed if the elderly did not realise something could be done.

How we built it

Our team built EasyAgeing in several stages. After spending a long period discussing the potential benefits of an online platform such as ours, we worked collaboratively on a mind-map which gave a birds-eye overview of the complete project and which broad areas important in elderly care that we wanted to focus on.

Our chief coder and team captain Alex first worked on a database which would be able to accept all of our data inputs and process them to return an output which gave our users a recommendation based on their needs. He worked afterwards to incorporate a visual design which was intuitive and modern, talking the user through each step while minimising the risk of a user becoming frustrated and not completing the survey.

Alysha and Jaffly had medical backgrounds and experience in the healthcare sector, hence they were best suited to problem-solving the unique challenges of producing questions which, in conversational language, still covered as many areas of elderly health as possible. They were also tasked with the challenge of researching all the necessary components of the aged care industry to include in our test case for our live-demo of the product. Jaffly also created the persona of our model user who would be highlighted in our eventual pitch. Through a storyboard and a creative application of post-it notes a physical but experimental prototype was created for Alex to finalise through his coding efforts.

The slide deck, pitch, and business model were predominantly created by Vanessa and Chris with input from the whole team. They created a plan to increase sales, find key partners, find service providers, improve the user experience, cost structure, where the value in our product was and what the most lucrative monetisation methods were. We considered how the product could be scaled to other markets, and where future development could lead in terms of extra components to our platform and what other value-adds we could include.

Challenges we ran into

Our team struggled with staying focused throughout the 2 days as our idea evolved as we were thinking big picture. There were many layers and it was a challenge to keep the platform simple yet impactful, and decide on the specifics to include for this hackathon. Due to our multidisciplinary team, there were different priorities at play of what to include and competing interests. Although our conflicting opinions were a challenge, we dealt with them well through multidisciplinary discussion, negotiation, and compromise.

Having only 1 coder was a constraint we had to contend with that significantly hampered our overall progress. However, we still managed to complete a prototype with functionality of a live demo. Nevertheless, each team member put 120% into the product and ensured that the areas they were tasked with were done to the highest quality possible.

Accomplishments that we are proud of

We are extremely proud of our end result and what we have achieved in such a short amount of time. As a team, we have worked very well together and immersed ourselves in an unfamiliar world of business for the medical students and healthcare for the business students. Alex was more experienced and led the team with a distinct calm which steadied the ship. We have all integrated our skills regardless of multidisciplinary backgrounds and learnt a lot about the process of building a product from scratch which we would not have thought possible only 48 hours ago. Alex specifically is proud to have stayed awake coding all day long.

What we learned

How to use: Devpost Product development Importance of collaboration Prioritisation and focus

Learned what a Hackathon is all about and teamwork skills!

What's next for EasyAgeing's submission

Plan to integrate social activities into the platform by utilizing geo-location services. This is to cater for the well-being component of the site for users and to encourage return users to the site. By incorporating the ability to have services personalised to the user, we expect much better engagement and thus economic potential.

We also hope to allow users to share their results through email or print to help empower families to take care of each other and take an active interest in the health of their elderly. Potentially include a reminder service for users to re-take the questionnaire every several years.

Release a platform that allows users to have all their data from multiple services in the one location to save time and stress when searching resources regarding future plans. This will, in turn, reduce administration costs for the government as consumers will have direct access to the information that concerns them without having to use multiple sources that cause a strain on the system.

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