Bygone Years

Allow me to introduce ourselves, explain our mission, and shed light on our motivations. I’m Jacob, the founder of advantAGE Seniors. Following my tenure as an administrator in various corporate hospitals, I established “advantAGE seniors” in 2002, as a Geriatric Service Provider. Witnessing elderly individuals struggle to access healthcare for minor procedures due to lack of support, often compounded by distant or overseas children, inspired me to bring nursing services directly to their doorstep.

During my time in the hospital, I observed that many of our patients, particularly seniors, would leave the hospital and return home, but not always in optimal health. With the majority of them grappling with multiple chronic conditions, their recovery process tends to be prolonged, necessitating monitoring and extra care at home. The exhausting and tedious process of returning to the hospital every other day for procedures, especially without adequate support, was evident. Many patients would spend hours in the hospital for procedures that only took fifteen minutes. This led me to ponder: why not provide these services in the comfort and convenience of their own homes? And thus, the journey began.

Back when we began two decades ago, terms like “geriatrics” and “gerontology” were unfamiliar, and we were among the first to initiate a service catering to frail elders. We offered essential nursing procedures such as IV infusions, oxygen administration, Ryle’s tube insertions or changes, catheterisations, bedsore dressing, enemas, as well as vital monitoring, transfers, and counseling. These services proved to be a lifeline for immobile elderly individuals facing mobility challenges.

It was actually a ‘social enterprise’ with passion and dedication rather a pure business. To be specific, not a charity but a social enterprising which pursue endeavours that generate revenue for survival than to seek monetary support. Our endeavour as mentioned above was more than just a business; it was a social enterprise fuelled by passion and dedication. Our primary aim wasn’t solely to maximise profits but to serve the elder community and their families, who often endure untold hardships.

Over the course of two decades, we’ve attended to a minimum of 30,000 patients across diverse roles, and we take pride in the fact that we’ve never left a single customer dissatisfied. Our approach has been different: we’ve refrained from advertising or marketing our services, instead relying on word-of-mouth referrals. We eschew the common practice of soliciting referrals through incentives or kickbacks. While others may resort to unethical practices, we believe in letting the quality of our work, our commitment, passion, and expertise speak for themselves.

Geriatrics and gerontology were unheard in the country when we started and we were the first to start using the terminology. Later social gerontology. The whole concept of geriatrics or gerontology were alien to the country and to establish we conducted eight international seminars. PSG Coimbatore, Lisie Kochi, Roshni Nilya Mangalore, NIMHANS Bangalore, Pushpagiri Tiruvalla, and Apollo Chennai were partnered with us for the conduct of these gerontology seminars.

We take great pride in our association with renowned experts in the field of gerontology, who offer invaluable guidance and support from various corners of the globe. Among them are Amy Cotton from Maine, Judy Parnes from New Jersey, Carolyn Gallogly from New York, Ibby Tanner from Baltimore, Robyn Flipse from New Jersey, Paul Nash from California, and Vanessa Burholt from New Zealand. These distinguished individuals are esteemed academics from institutions such as John Hopkins, Rutgers, Long Island University, UC Davis, and Swansea University, with whom we foster knowledge partnerships.

It’s essential to acknowledge the late Dr. Nagaraj Shetty, to whom we owe a great debt of gratitude for his unwavering support. A well respected figure within the medical community in Karnataka, Dr. Shetty’s former students can attest to his exemplary work and dedication. We take pride in the fact that he served as our mentor, providing invaluable guidance as we navigated our path as social gerontology practitioners.

The exemplary work achieved by myself and Sowmya could not have been accomplished alone. It was the dedication and exceptional service of our caregivers, whom we trained from the ground up, that propelled us to become a household name in Bangalore. These caregivers were characterised by their care, love, and compassion, qualities essential for this challenging profession. Our experience has shown us that everyone involved, both within our facilities and outside, is driven by genuine compassion for infirm elders. This demanding profession demands a unique combination of qualities including patience, knowledge, sacrifice, and compassion, all of which our caregivers possess in abundance. They truly serve as the backbone of our organisation, and we owe them a debt of gratitude.

After more than two decades, our dedication and passion for the well-being of elders continue to thrive. We have yet to experience “Compassion Fatigue.” At advantAGE Seniors, we maintain our unwavering commitment to time-honoured values and ethics, ensuring that there is no compromise on care. Our journey persists with unwavering resolve and determination.