Press release

Gotcare’s program evaluation at Women’s College Hospital improves healthcare accessibility for homebound older adults

June 11, 2024

June 11, 2024 (Toronto, ON) — Currently, care for homebound older adults often involves little overlap and continuity between primary care and community care services. Gotcare’s “In The Community (ITC): Health Ambassador” program was developed as an innovative healthcare solution that aimed to provide support at home to older adults through a combination of in-home visits by a health ambassador, health monitoring, virtual care with a nurse, and ongoing interventions addressing social isolation.

With support from OBIO’s Early Adopter Health Network (EAHN™), The Centre for Digital Health Evaluation (CDHE) at Women’s College Hospital (WCH) has successfully completed its evaluation of Gotcare’s ITC program. Findings suggest that 87% of the participants reported that the ITC program helped improve their quality of life once at home. Additionally, 93% of them agreed that the ITC program helped them feel less isolated after returning home.

The evaluation offered a range of services, including routine check-ins or other health monitoring measurements (e.g., blood pressure), support in developing an at home care plan, technology training to use the platform, and access to a virtual nurse via a personalized Gotcare tablet. During visits, the health ambassador documents participants’ well-being. Any health deterioration or symptom exacerbation is flagged by Gotcare’s AI-enabled Community Dashboard, which is monitored by a nurse, and prompts a virtual visit. The nurse then compiles those notes, along with their own interactions with the participants during virtual sessions, and sends them to their family doctor, at a frequency requested and agreed upon by the referring physician or case manager.

“Given the healthcare labour shortage across Canada, it’s more important than ever for everyone to operate at the very tippy top of their scope – including home care providers,” said Chenny Xia, CEO and co-founder of Gotcare. “By upskilling providers to become health ambassadors, and incorporating digital health as a part of care delivery, older adults can receive more timely interventions for low acuity care needs – conveniently, in their own home.”

Of the program participants who completed the survey, approximately 60% indicated that the services provided by the program helped them avoid an unnecessary visit to the emergency department, and approximately 63% of them indicated that the program helped them avoid an unnecessary visit with their family doctor.

Everyone agreed (43%) or strongly agreed (57%) that they were happy with the services provided by the health ambassadors. The majority of program participants were satisfied with the support they received for their at home care plan (79%) and for having their health concerns addressed virtually (93%).

“Our evaluation found that Gotcare’s In The Community Program provided great value to their clients,” explained Dr. Jennifer Shuldiner, Scientist at Women’s College Hospital. “They reported that their health ambassador provided emotional support and companionship. They also helped with nutrition, transportation, and groceries. Clients appreciated the consistency of having the same person visit, someone who understood their needs and who they felt comfortable with.”

“Nearly all Canadians want to age at home. As people age, it becomes more difficult to make it to their doctor’s office or participate in activities that promote health,” said Dr. Dominik Nowak, Family Physician at Women’s College Hospital. “A health ambassador is simply a flexible prescription for a supportive human — who can help the participant with anything from getting to doctor’s visits, care needs to avoid emergency room visits, all the way to social connection and meaningful activity.”

Following the CDHE’s positive determination of value of the ITC program and a recommendation to proceed with a procurement process, OBIO’s EAHN™ can now provide support to other healthcare organizations interested in the procurement of Gotcare’s ITC program.

“OBIO® is always eager to support the adoption and integration of made-in-Ontario solutions in areas of our healthcare system that have historically been overlooked and have more often than not been neglected,” said Dr. Maura Campbell, President and CEO of OBIO®. “The important work that Gotcare and Women’s College Hospital have carried out to coordinate and integrate primary care with community healthcare services will help revolutionize our approach to aging at home.”

About Gotcare

The health care worker shortage has left many older adults and people living with chronic conditions without access to the care they need. By attracting and upskilling community health workers who have previously left the sector, Gotcare is rehumanizing the patient care journey. They provide personalized in-home care, AI-driven health monitoring, and virtual care support to address low-acuity care needs right at home. Gotcare is a social enterprise and a certified living wage employer. For more information:

About Women’s College Hospital

For more than 100 years Women’s College Hospital (WCH) has been developing revolutionary advances in healthcare. Today, WCH is a world leader in health equity and Canada’s leading academic ambulatory hospital. It focuses on delivering innovative solutions that address Canada’s most pressing issues related to population health, patient experience and system costs. The Centre for Digital Health Evaluation at WCH offers timely, high-quality evaluations of digital health technologies at various stages of maturity by partnering with leading experts in the health and technology sectors.

About OBIO®

OBIO®, a not-for-profit, membership-based organization dedicated to advancing health technology innovation and commercialization, is prioritizing the evaluation of new technologies through its Early Adopter Health Network (EAHN™). OBIO® is engaged in strategy, programming, policy development and advocacy to further the commercialization of human health technologies, positioning Canada as a leader in the international marketplace. For more information, please visit and follow OBIO® on LinkedIn and X.

Media Contacts:

Chenny Xia

Maria Madden
Manager, Public Affairs
Women’s College Hospital

Doriane Rey
Senior Manager, Marketing & Communications

For any additional questions, please contact us.