Revolutionary CGI healthcare system takes on challenge of Europe’s demographic timebomb  

EVEN taken with a moderate pinch of salt, recent statistics certainly make the future of our health and social care services look concerningly untenable. This is no scaremongering exercise – our population are demanding more and more of those services and unless there are significant developments in how they are managed and delivered, we are facing a severe crisis of care.

“The demographic changes are well documented,” says Justene Ewing, who joined CGI as Vice President Consulting Services after four years as CEO of the Digital Health & Care Institute. “At a not too distant point in the future we will have more older people than people under the age of 16 for the first time in our history, and the NHS was not set up to cope with that.” 

Part of the reason we are living longer is that the NHS has done such a brilliant job, but when it was established the average life expectancy was around 20 years shorter than today.

“Take into account that my daughter, born in 2011, has life expectancy of 103, and we can see the scale of the problem we are facing,” adds Justene.

As a company CGI has a healthy global footprint in care services, developing digital health products that have transformed health and social care, particularly in northern European countries such as Finland, Germany, and Estonia where digital health has been the first approach.

“At CGI there are two main systems that we have been developing. One is CGI CommunityCare360, a modular solution that connects patients, primary care physicians, case coordinators, work coordinators, extended teams, mobile care providers, first responders, administrators, and managers.
“It is essentially a tool that creates a set of data to support people living in their own homes for as long as they possibly can, but uses database technology and the Internet Of Things.”

It provides the independence that all people living with complex illness and long-term conditions want and will mean fewer daily visits, as information could be stored in cloud services and accessed by carers, clearing the reams of paperwork created by multiple services duplicating information and avoiding unnecessary intrusion into people’s homes, supporting independent living. “They say that 30 days of data provides a pattern of living. Imagine a situation when you’re using intelligent automation and augmented reality that means unnecessary visits can be avoided. It starts to empower someone to take control over their own life again.

“Most people over 65 are in hospital because they are under observation or on delayed discharge because sometimes that can even be because going home means there is no one there to help them go to the bathroom. Imagine a situation when you understand a person’s personal pattern of living and the impact that dynamic and reactive scheduling of care visits could make a world of difference to enabling a better standard of living for individuals in that situation.”

Justene talks about Smart Homes that can have movement sensors and wearable devices similar to Fitbit or Apple watches. Not only can these monitor health but they wouldn’t carry the perceived stigma of the current community alarm pendant.

“What CommunityCare360 is looking at is how you can advance that level of care beyond hospital or care home walls.”

The complementary programme to this is e-CareLogic, which tackles one of the biggest healthcare problems for workers and keeping people safe and well.

“We have a massive challenge in the UK in how we integrate health and social care data,” adds Justene. “It’s extremely difficult for care workers to see what GPs are doing and vice-versa. There are few easy automated ways for GPs to know that something has changed, or that there is a potential concern.”

CGI’s e-CareLogic is a system integration tool that works with any of the health care systems out there today, bringing together data and providing one view of a person’s support in health and social care. 

“It can work together with CommunityCare360 which provides for the potential of health professionals to look at predictive analytics and start to build a picture. For me, it also provides the ability to have the view of what’s going on and to be involved in my own parents’ care in the future, as we will all have to be more involved in supporting our families as they age.”

These are emerging technologies that need to have an emphasis on the individual and their care but also need to be flexible and change quickly.

Justene said: “That is something CGI has shown that it’s well-equipped to do. It’s clear that something has to change quite fundamentally. Digital health from an economic perspective is still the fastest-growing global sector. 

“Within that, everything from data, the Internet Of Things, centre-based technology, robotics, and many other applications are encapsulated.

“There is a dichotomy in that we have an unsustainable situation, but with that comes and incredible opportunity for job creation. So you can create jobs but also solve one of the greatest societal challenges we have ever seen.”

This article was originally published as part of The Herald STEM campaign. Our sister title launched this campaign in association with CGI, University of Glasgow, City of Glasgow College, Dell EMC, Scottish Funding Council and Skills Development Scotland to shine a light upon the achievements of scientists, engineers and academics – while also encouraging a whole new generation of potential pioneers to take up essential STEM subjects in school and further education. Visit for more information.