KETV Newswatch 7
OMAHA, Neb. —
A good business idea solves a problem.
That's just what Amy Johnson and her family drew up from an experience her father-in-law was having with his mother in a care facility.
"He felt this gap," Johnson said about connection issues and barriers posed by distance. "So we were talking as a family that this process should be easier to connect and stay in the loop," Johnson said.
LifeLoop was born in 2013 from those conversations. It got a turbocharge from an investment by Steve Case during his 'Rise of the Rest' tour stop in Omaha in 2016.
It's a software platform for computers and mobile devices that facilities can use to connect families with their loved ones. It also allows families to communicate with staff members and shows meal plans and scheduled activities.
"We're able to help facilitate the FaceTime video or actually having a valuable conversation," Johnson said. "Instead of 'Hey, how you doing?' it's more like 'Hey, I saw you were able to watch this show in your room.'"
As the COVID-19 pandemic gripped the nation and forced many care facilities to shutter their doors, the platform also became a communication tool for centers to send messages out to families.
Johnson's business has grown during the crisis. LifeLoop has added more facilities that needed a quick and efficient way to reach their residents' families.
The LifeLoop platform serves all levels of care, from skilled nursing to independent living, Johnson said. And that presents a challenge.
"We have to have a product that's really easy to use," she explained.
Johnson has praised the efforts of most care facilities during the pandemic, arguing they face a tough mission of keeping vulnerable populations safe from a fast-spreading, sometimes undetected virus.
And she knows the coronavirus threat will linger for months — maybe years — to come, even after the rest of society opens up.
"Senior living is probably the last place it's going away," Johnson said. "We're really focused on giving facilities the tools to be transparent with audiences because that need is not going to change."