Recent News

Recent News

VHA launches InnoVHAtion Advisory Committee to fuel Age Tech in the Community

February 28, 2024
InnoVHAtion Advisory Council

Every VHA Home HealthCare (VHA) innovation endeavour aims to bring people together to improve the lives of clients and families and transform how care is delivered in the community.

With the launch of VHA’s InnoVHAtion Advisory Council, the organization is taking a concrete step into the Age Tech space. The council supports the establishment and future direction of InnoVHAtion at VHA by evaluating emerging technologies and their alignment with organizational goals and potential impact. Many of these technologies may be deployed through the Community InnoVHAtion Lab program, which bridges a gap between tech startups and end users by enabling technology testing in real world situations and in people’s homes.

The InnoVHAtion Advisory Council had its first meeting in February. Client partners together with team members from across the organization and its regions came together at VHA’s head office in Toronto to learn about ongoing innovation work and to begin the selection process for technology partners through CABHI’s Discover and Adopt initiative. VHA was among the first 22 organizations across Canada to be selected to join this program.

“By bringing together subject matter experts from across the VHA community, including our client partners, we want to foster a culture of openness to new ideas, experimentation, and a willingness to embrace positive change,” says Jordan D’Souza, VHA’s Head of Innovation.

A collage of innovation technologies

At its second recent committee meeting, representatives from five tech startups joined to demonstrate their products and pitch how they could be deployed in the home care space:

  • CHIRP: A multi-sensor device with radar sensing and activity monitoring that detects changes in baseline behaviour as predictors of health issues in aging individuals. The system provides real-time notifications of falls, bed occupancy, and exits, with 2-way voice communication for remote assistance.
  • Pontosense: A wireless sensing tool that measures vital signs and fall detection in real-time, achieving nearly 100% accuracy. Pontosense’s solution tackles the critical issue of an aging population, ensuring prompt assistance after falls and reducing negative effects associated with prolonged immobility.
  • My Medic Watch: A wearable technology with advanced algorithms for real-time health monitoring, focusing on personalized detection of medical events such as falls and seizures. The comprehensive monitoring suite includes a caregiver app and a Remote Patient Monitoring Platform, enhancing proactive patient care and revolutionizing the way medical professionals track patient wellness.
  • Pacsana: A discrete wear-and-forget smart bracelet, popular among older adults, captures key metrics such as gait speed, active minutes, exercise, and sleep. Compliant with HIPAA, GDPR, and ISO27001 for privacy and data security, the bracelet provides insights and alerts to care staff through a web dashboard and mobile application.
  • 3D Bridge Solutions Inc – Bridge Health Solutions -Remy: A medication management device to support independent living and peace of mind for seniors and their support networks by monitoring adherence and health.

The committee ranked the devices in a number of key areas, including how well they fit with VHA’s existing care delivery and programs and how easy they are to use.

After a meticulous evaluation, the committee selected Pontosense as the optimal solution, considering its integration with VHA’s care delivery, adaptability to current programs, and user-friendliness. Pontosense not only meets the diverse needs of VHA clients and families but also aligns strategically with the organization’s evolving integrated care models.

As part of some next steps, the Innovation portfolio plans on recruiting participants who want to partake in the pilot, speficially looking at those who are at risk of a fall but are supported by caregivers.

“We are optimistic that the Pontosense solution could contribute to the organization’s trajectory in the era of integrated care with more sophisticated tech solutions to support safe aging in place. The involvement of clients and families is at the centre of these goals. Embrace this opportunity to be at the forefront of progress and make a meaningful impact on the future of healthcare, ” says Jordan.

If you are interested in getting involved with innovation at VHA, please email