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Startup Ideas for the Post Covid World: Home-Based Healthcare

Posted on Wednesday, Jul 8th 2020

Certain sectors of industry are facing extraordinary levels of job loss in the post-Covid era. While some of these jobs may come back, it is widely believed that some trends are permanent. The retail sector faces one of the greatest shifts: the move to online shopping seems irreversible. Retail stores and malls are rapidly closing down. Service sector jobs in retail and hospitality face a grim future.

There is, however, a solution.

Service sector employees can be retrained as healthcare professionals.

Some data from the Population Reference Bureau (PRB):

The aging of the baby boom generation could fuel a 75 percent increase in the number of Americans aged 65 and older requiring nursing home care, to about 2.3 million in 2030 from 1.3 million in 2010, the Population Reference Bureau (PRB) projects in a new report.

The report notes that the number of Americans aged 65 and older is on course to more than double from 46 million in 2016 to over 98 million by 2060, while the 65-and-older age group’s share of the total population will rise to nearly 24 percent from 15 percent.

There are two segments of opportunities within this sector:

  1. Home based healthcare for the affluent elderly
  2. Nursing home-based healthcare

The latter is a poorly paid industry that faces tremendous difficulty attracting trained personnel.

The former, however, is an interesting opportunity to implement a certain social engineering capable of delivering win-win value for both the elderly and their caregivers.

There are many affluent elderly people who live in sizable houses where a live-in caregiver can comfortably move in. In fact, in many cases, an entire family can move into a household where the owners are no longer capable of taking care of themselves or their properties.

Often, such homeowners are lonely. As mobility gets constrained, they seek company and care at home.

Why not create a startup that trains caregivers, as well as places them into compatible situations?

Training needs to be in a variety of specialized disciplines from dementia related care, cancer care, and other types of illnesses that require specific administration. Basic, general geriatric care is also an option where otherwise healthy people simply need help and company in daily life.

The caregivers have different needs as well. Some are solo. Some are couples. Some are families with kids. Some want to work just during the day. Some at night. So on.

Matchmaking needs to happen. A 76-year-old widower may want a family taking care of him in exchange of housing and wages, not only fulfilling his healthcare needs, but also cooking, cleaning, and in some cases, the need for companionship.

Some Numbers:

At the end of May 2020, 40 million people had filed for unemployment in the United States.

The economy will improve in due course, and things will improve. However, there are certain sectors that face structural unemployment. That is what the idea in consideration would need to address.

Let us say, 100k households are interested in spending $60k a year on home based healthcare. That is a $6 billion budget. 

If we specifically focus on households that offer housing to the caregivers, that takes care of additional expenses for 100k families trying to make ends meet.

Let us say, the marketplace takes a 10% commission for facilitating the matchmaking, verifying backgrounds, etc. That amounts to a $600 million annual revenue opportunity.

In addition, training is a revenue opportunity that ought to be considered. Government programs need to finance some of this training. Placement is built into the framework. Thus, for governments, partnering with such private companies is attractive. Perhaps, $5k per person is a reasonable training budget. That’s another $500 million in one-time revenue opportunity (not recurring revenue) to train 100k caregivers.

Overall, this is a substantial business opportunity with a tremendous social good value proposition.

Multiple large companies can be built. They can be regional. They can be based on specializations. The TAM is large. And this market can absorb several million caregiver families catering to several million elderly households.

It IS a Unicorn startup idea.

It is NOT Winner Takes It All.

Multiple Unicorns can be built based on this premise.

If you want to work on these ideas and are looking for mentoring, start by going through our free Bootstrapping Course, especially the Bootstrapping with a Paycheck module, and then come to our Free Public Roundtables. We hold them weekly.

Photo by Dominik Lange on Unsplash

This segment is a part in the series : Startup Ideas for the Post Covid World

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