HOUSTON – With $3 million in hand, BrainCheck plans to expand its software into the senior adult market where dementia is a major concern.
“There’s just such an unbelievable need,” said Yael Katz, BrainCheck CEO. “Really, the same people who are worried about their teenage athletes and concussions are worried about their elderly parents with dementia.”
BrainCheck uses simple iPad or desktop screen games to measure reaction time, visual processing, cognitive processing, coordination and memory in just a few minutes. Student athletes in more than 40 organizations across the country currently use the app to establish their baseline brain function and then check brain performance after an injury and during recovery.
Since its beginnings in 2014, the tracking software has focused on concussions in student athletes. After making strides in that area, BrainCheck is shifting its focus to the senior market.
“With dementia, you don’t realize you have it until the disease has progressed pretty far,” said Katz. “We think having a cognitive component as part of a patient monitoring program is important.”
Katz said BrainCheck was designed so it could be administered by anyone. They plan to market the expanded product to home health agencies, residential aging communities and hospitals.
Katz makes clear that BrainCheck is not a diagnostic tool; it was designed to measure how the brain is working. But the information it gathers on cognitive function can play an important part in measuring a senior’s brain health.
“We hope to use our understanding of cognitive scores to advance the science of dementia,” said Katz. “With the kind of data the app gathers, we will be able to do that.”