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5 Q’S With Vaishnav, Co-founder of AayaCare

by Aswin Prabhakar
by

The Center for Data Innovation spoke with Vaishnav (prefers to be referred to by their first name), co-founder of AayaCare. This Indian startup enhances healthcare access by efficiently matching patients with companions who assist with visits to healthcare facilities. Vaishnav shared insights into what motivated the creation of AayaCare, highlighting its data-driven approach to pairing patients with suitable companions. He also spoke about AayaCare’s strategies for embracing cultural diversity and ensuring privacy in the healthcare sector.

Aswin Prabhakar: What inspired the creation of AayaCare?

Vaishnav: The inspiration for AayaCare came from a very personal challenge that Arun, my cousin and co-founder, and I faced. When Arun’s father, my uncle, required regular medical care, both of us were living in different parts of the country, which made it challenging for us to be consistently present for his medical appointments. This situation highlighted the importance of having someone trustworthy, like a family member or friend, during medical scenarios. But it can be hard for family or friends to be always around. Recognizing this common challenge, we developed AayaCare, enabling patients to connect with reliable companions and providing the necessary support and assistance during medical visits, much like a family member or friend would.

Prabhakar: How does your platform use data to enhance the experience and efficiency of the services provided by AayaCare?

Vaishnav: AayaCare is a platform for healthcare companionship, where anyone willing to offer support and companionship to healthcare patients can sign up. Our AI-driven system plays a crucial role in this inclusive model. It analyzes a wide range of data—from patient preferences to the diverse skills and availability of our registered companions, who come from various walks of life. We use AI to categorize needs and match patients with the most appropriate companions, based on factors like empathy, compatibility, and personal care. Additionally, our AI-powered training equips these companions with the necessary skills to meet each patient’s unique requirements effectively, ensuring a personalized and empathetic care experience.

Prabhakar: Given the sensitive nature of healthcare data, could you elaborate on the measures AayaCare has implemented to ensure data security and privacy for your users?

Vaishnav: Recognizing the immense responsibility of handling healthcare data, AayaCare adheres to stringent data security and privacy protocols. We are committed to upholding the trust our users place in us. To this end, we strategically avoid storing detailed medical histories. Our privacy policy is crafted with transparency and user understanding in mind, focusing on what data we collect—mainly around service preferences and companion reviews. Furthermore, our companions are legally bound by comprehensive non-disclosure agreements. These measures ensure that all information shared with AayaCare is treated with confidentiality and respect.

Prabhakar: India has a rich cultural diversity and strong traditions regarding family care. How do these cultural aspects influence your business model and services?

Vaishnav: AayaCare operates in India’s metropolitan cities, where cultural diversity is the norm. Recognizing this, we offer options for language and gender preferences to accommodate the varied needs of our patients. In a society where familial bonds are deeply cherished, our companions are trained to provide a sense of familiarity and comfort, bridging the gap between professional service and familial care. This approach has been fundamental in building trust and satisfaction among our diverse clientele.

Prabhakar: Looking towards the future, how do you envision the evolution of AayaCare in the ever-changing landscape of healthcare and technology?

Vaishnav: Looking forward, AayaCare aims to extend its services beyond hospital visits. We recognize that the need for companionship spans various life stages and situations. For the elderly, accompanying them to religious places could be a natural progression of our services. Loneliness is a global concern, and we aspire to address this through thoughtful and compassionate solutions. Our goal is to expand our reach, helping people combat loneliness and ensuring they have the support they need when they need it.

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