Hi, I’m Victor. I got my Master’s from MIT, doing human-machine interaction research for NASA. That’s thanks to the hard work and sacrifice of my parents, who brought me to Canada from Taiwan at a young age. They had to leave behind a lot, including their own parents – my grandparents, who are the inspiration behind GeriJoy.[ADVANCE TO SHOW NAINAI] One of my grandmothers takes center stage in a large immediate family; she’s always happy and optimistic. My other grandmother, who lives alone, is depressed, and sometimes talks about suicide. [ADVANCE TO SHOW LAOLAO] My mom here tried to teach grandma how to use a webcam so we can stay better connected halfway around the world, but grandma doesn’t have the best technical skills.It turns out this problem of social isolation is not only prevalent among elders living alone, but also in senior care facilities, where staff are overworked, family can only visit so often, and negative mental and emotional states among residents can stifle social interaction.In fact, studies show that feeling lonely is a significant risk factor for functional decline and death in those over the age of 60. Typical treatments include psychiatric medications, which, besides being very expensive, significantly increase mortality and risk of falls.So when I finished my graduate studies, I teamed up with my co-founder, Shuo Deng, a PhD candidate at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab. To make life better for elders and their families everywhere, we created a talking dog. We call him Buddy.
Here he is. The next version will be even cuter. Gotta love software.While working with Golden LivingCenters, standard psychological surveys showed that Buddy results in a variety of emotional health improvements. Beyond improving resident quality of life, we also found that family members loved Buddy. So as we continue to work with Golden and other leading organizations, we anticipate GeriJoy being able to reduce the use of expensive, dangerous psychiatric medicines and improve quality ratings at senior care facilities. This will result in GeriJoy-enabled facilities being able to decrease their costs and increase their revenues compared to their less innovative peers.So how does Buddy do all this?
We currently offer Buddy as a software service to senior care facilities. It runs on standard tablet hardware, iPad or Android, making for a very low upfront cost.Buddy allows you to take advantage of the proven health benefits of individualized pet therapy. Buddy responds naturally to touch, like a real pet [ADVANCE THROUGH TWICE TO SHOW AND THEN HIDE PETTING IMAGE], and it’s very easy to feed and take care of him, even for people who would not be able to care for a real animal.Beyond these proven health benefits, Buddy also provides conversational companionship. Truly intelligent and compassionate conversation, facilitated by our human representatives. I wouldn’t trust my grandma’s mental health with Siri! Instead, our representatives listen to what Buddy’s owner is saying and create responses that Buddy immediately says out loud. With our technology platform and our worldwide network of human helpers, we can deliver intelligent and compassionate conversational companionship, 24/7, at a monthly price comparable to many consumers’ cell phone bills.Through this conversational interface, Buddy can also deliver photos and updates from family. It’s as easy as sending a quick email to Buddy’s email account. Buddy will deliver the message to his owner intelligently, like a well-trained dog -- a well-trained, talking dog.Photos and news don’t have to just be from family – here Buddy is showing you some flowers, pulled straight from Google Image Search. You can get all the mental stimulation of surfing the web without even knowing what a keyboard or mouse is. Just talk to Buddy.
Here’s what people are saying about us.We also have quotes from leading medical doctors talking about our applications in improving mental health and reducing use of psychiatric medications, but you can check our website for those – they’re rather wordy.
So if you’re a leader in senior care and improving resident and family satisfaction is important to you, please come talk with me about how we can add the GeriJoy service to your facility as an additional stream of income for you.We’ll also be launching a viral marketing campaign soon, and we’re looking for partners to share in the great PR benefits.And of course, being an exciting new company, we’re seeking investment to fuel growth and development, so if this is your kind of business, I’d love to chat.
BenefitsQuality of lifeFamily satisfactionPsychiatric medicinesQuality ratings
FeaturesTouch & caretakingConversationFamily photos/newsEasy Internet access
Testimonials“Buddy is definitely amazing. Theres no such thing asbeing alone with Buddy.” Scherolle Lamisere Golden LivingCenters“Buddy kept my father busy and entertained, and gavehim both a source of conversation and a sense of socialresponsibility. The whole family and all the people atthe facility loved Buddy!” Jama Chaprales Daughter of a GeriJoy Owner
Would you like to…• Be an innovator and leader in eldercare?• Improve customer satisfaction?• Gain an additional source of revenues?