Written by Stuart Foxman
For personal support workers (PSWs) and clients alike, Dipesh Pattni says the current system doesn’t always work.
Pattni, founder and CEO of Ayd Cares (aydcares.com), says families often have to settle for what’s available, rather than receive what they need the most and when they need it. PSWs, meanwhile, don’t always get enough hours from their agencies, or may not know precisely what to expect when they do a home visit.
Ayd Cares aims to reduce those pain points. The Mississauga-based company operates a platform that connects certified and insured PSWs with clients, across the GTA.
Via an app, PSWs can easily sign up and create a profile. Families can then search for PSWs and arrange care with them directly.
Clients get the benefit of access to a large and growing network of PSWs, direct communication, and scheduling that fits their lifestyle.
For PSWs, Ayd Cares allows them to become more entrepreneurial, setting their own schedule and earning more money (at market wages). Higher-rated PSWs see opportunities first. “It’s an efficient way to find work,” says Pattni. Session confirmations contain details of tasks, so that PSWs can be better prepared for the day – no surprises.
After a home care appointment, Ayd Cares automatically deposits the wages for the PSW. Clients get an email receipt, with the fee, PSW name and session details. Ayd Cares charges a transaction fee per session.
Before creating Ayd Cares in 2018, Pattni was executive vice-president at Motion Specialties, a mobility and accessibility solutions provider. The genesis of Ayd Cares was the idea of home care on demand, removing the friction that exists in coordinating care.
“It creates transparency in the market,” says Pattni.
Ayd Cares is Pattni’s third business. He successfully exited the previous two. One was in information technology, the other in high-end microscopes.
To help get Ayd Cares off the ground, Pattni worked with LaunchYU (launchyu.ca/), York University’s entrepreneurship unit. It supports entrepreneurs and their ventures at the school and in the community.
Through LaunchYU, entrepreneurs become better positioned to develop and grow their businesses. They get to learn about entrepreneurship, meet like-minded individuals and potential investors, solve business issues, and collaborate with university and industry partners.
Pattni was already well acquainted with York, having earned an MBA in 2015 from the Schulich School of Business (where he did a paper on health care sustainability). With LaunchYU, Pattni was part of the four-month Accelerator program. It helps entrepreneurs to build, launch and scale their venture. Assistance includes bootcamps, workshops and one-on-one mentoring.
“The program was tremendous in setting the foundation,” says Pattni. “The hands-on sessions were instrumental to make sure you stayed within your track and iterate as quickly as possible.”
Technology makes Ayd Cares possible, but Pattni focuses on the human element. He says that with the support that Ayd Cares facilitates, seniors can age in place and continue independent living.
Pattni hopes that the platform will allow PSWs and clients to create what, he says, home care should be about: a highly personal experience.
Photo credit: Zlatko Cetinic, Images Made Real