National Competition Will Reward Innovation in Senior Care

Winners will be entrepreneurs and startups that come up with ideas to improve the quality of life of seniors

By Erika Morris


A competition to support entrepreneurship in Canada’s technology and aging sector has been launched that will net winners $20,000.

The National Impact Challenge is a project of AGE-WELL, a technology and aging research network that brings researchers, older adults, and caregivers together. The network’s goal is to develop technologies, services, and policies that improve quality of life for seniors while providing social and economic benefits for Canada.

The competition is intended to challenge entrepreneurs and startups to come up with technology-based solutions that can support the health and quality of life of older adults and caregivers. One winner will be chosen from each of the regional competitions, being held in Halifax, Toronto, and Whistler, BC.

“We’re pleased to be running this competition once again and to be spotlighting top Canadian innovators whose products can positively impact older Canadians or their caregivers,” Dr. Alex Mihailidis, the scientific co-director and CEO of the AGE-WELL Network of Centres of Excellence, said in a statement.

Last year, Walk-Well Universe won Montreal’s competition with a project aimed at developing health technologies that address unsafe walking. The goal is to reduce falls and fall-related injuries such as fractures. The company developed a sensor, Heel2Toe, to put on a user’s shoe; sound feedback stimulates the brain to make improved walking more permanent. As walking is the best way to stay physically active, the product aims to maintain seniors’ independence and health.

Vancouver’s winner was the Mobili-T, a device that helps adults with swallowing difficulties. Mobili-T is placed under the chin, and an app provides real-time feedback on a mobile device. Toronto’s winner, Bisep, created a device that attaches a person’s wheelchair directly to his or her walker.

The deadline to apply is April 17. Details can be found on the AGE-WELL website’s competition main page.

Photo: iStock/SIphotography.