Uniting Around the Dream of Improving Senior Living and Healthcare

Posted by Origin Active Lifestyle Communities on April 16, 2018 | 3 minute read

allen devine

Origin Active Lifestyles is proud to develop and operate innovative, active living communities throughout Canada. Part of this innovation is understanding the importance technology plays in the senior living industry, and staying up-to-date with new and emerging technology solutions, as well as surrounding ourselves with others who are passionate about improving and reshaping the way we define “senior living”.

Established in 2008 following the acquisition of EMERGIS, TELUS Health is now the largest EMR (Electronic Medical Records) provider in Canada; they understand the impact technology is having on healthcare and the senior living industry. Technology that can connect doctors and other healthcare physicians with one another and with their patients and can help turn information into better health outcomes. Leading this venture is TELUS’s “Dream Office” and their Chief Dreamer, Allen Devine.

Improving the Lives of Seniors

As a caregiver for an aging parent, Allen is one of over 8 million Canadians providing informal care to a family member. This experience and his love for technology is what inspired him to discover and utilize tools that could help him monitor his mother’s health. Technology like sensors that can be placed around a room or home and track regular behaviour patterns, but also track random or erratic behaviours, that may signal a health issue arising. As well as a mobile robot with video conferencing features that allow his mother to connect with her doctors and family members face-to-face. While beneficial on a personal level, these tools can be utilized in the senior living industry to provide better, faster care for those living in memory care, assisted or independent living communities.

Who Are You Before You Are Sick?

For TELUS Health as a whole, one of their main projects is focusing on Consumer Health and understanding the ecosystem surrounding a patient - evaluating patients pre-symptomatically and asking the question “Who are you before you are sick?”. By answering this question, Allen’s team is provided with a benchmark for measuring success regarding how medical treatments and antibiotics are impacting the patient. Origin embraces this same ideology by working to fully understand our community members to provide them with the highest level of customized care possible. 

Putting the Patient in Charge of Their Care

Allen believes the most fascinating discovery his Dream Office has made was identifying the value of the caregiver circle and removing the patient from the center of it. When the patient is in the middle, Allen believes, this reduces their amount of involvement. Using Allen’s mother as an example, by pushing her to the edges of the caregiver circle and having her treatment plan in the middle, she became responsible for her own care. Although every case is unique, Origin encourages our community members to be actively involved in their care plan so, together, we can create a plan that is as beneficial and customized to their needs and wants as possible. 

When asked how Allen saw the scope of healthcare and senior living transforming in the future, he said: “we are moving the hospital from the bottom of the cliff to the top of the road.” His team is working to get ahead of the curve and “preventing the need for the fall” which is evolving into better health outcomes. Although change is happening now in a fragmented sense, we have to agree on a dream and unite behind it to see change happen on a larger scale. Many times, we find reasons why we cannot do something, because of the how – “How is this possible?” or “How do we make this happen?" TELUS Health believes that if everyone unites around the same dream, the how will settle itself. 

Origin Active Lifestyles has the same belief in uniting behind a dream. Having watched his parents’ victories and struggles as team members in the senior living industry, our Founder, Neil Prashad, created the vision of providing a better way to care for seniors and the employees of senior communities and we continue to rally around that dream every day.