A local start-up has launched an online portal to match those seeking services such as step-down and at-home care with qualified caregiving professionals, in the hope that it will bring relief to those in need of such help.
The portal, www.caregiverasia.com, will also allow health and caregiving professionals, such as nurses and allied health practitioners, to list their services on the site.
Caregiver Asia chief executive Yeo Wan Ling said failure to receive trusted and on-time care, especially when it comes to the care of a loved one, could lead to heartache and stress for a family.
“We believe that everyone deserves to have easy and transparent access to accredited, reasonably priced and quality care services,” she said.
Those who require such assistance may register with the portal and select from a range of caregiving services, including dementia, rehabilitative and special-needs care. Also listed are the caregiving professionals’ terms and conditions of service, such as the cost and length of each session as well as a short profile and reviews, among other things.
Health and caregiving professionals can sign up at the site and state their areas of speciality, years of experience, qualifications and other details. Certificates uploaded are screened and verified by the company.
Charges are determined solely by the caregiver and paid to him or her up to three days after a service has been rendered. An additional booking fee of 6 per cent of the total charges goes to Caregiver Asia and will be borne by the client.
DEMAND AND SUPPLY
As of press time, the site had all of eight postings by caregiving professionals, but Ms Yeo said 8,000 of such practitioners across the Asia-Pacific region, most of whom are in Singapore, are already registered on the firm’s database. They just have not activated their accounts yet, she said.
The firm will be intensifying its community efforts to reach out to these practitioners and hopes to have most of them come on board by the first quarter of the year, said Ms Yeo.
When asked what could be done to keep high fees in check, Ms Yeo said those who charge exorbitant fees would not receive bookings. “This would be a matter of demand meets supply.”
Only caregiving professionals who are Singaporeans or permanent residents can sign up to provide services here.
Ms Yeo said the company plans to extend the portal’s reach to other parts of Asia, including Malaysia and Hong Kong, and it hopes to build a network of one million caregiving practitioners across the region by year-end. The portal will also be available as a mobile application on Android devices from Feb 14, while plans are in place to roll it out to Apple devices by the end of this quarter.