Being Mortal was my favorite health care book of 2014. It forced not only a national conversation about aging and how society will care for the elderly, but also a personal one that dredged up one of my deepest concerns—how my parents and my older sibling will live as they grow older. When I visited my family over Thanksgiving, everything suddenly appeared acute. I was closely eyeing their graying hair, listening intently as they ambled up and down the staircase, and raising my eyebrows over every dietary choice.
It is embarrassing to admit that the only thing I did was leave behind a digital copy of Being Mortal for my mother to read, hoping she would give it some thought and discuss it with my father. I want them to plan their own future, because, selfishly, I know that I will not be going to Kansas more than once a year or moving out there to live with them as they get older. As it turns out, I’m not alone. Many of the individuals from my generation live far from their parents. And we don’t know what to do as they get older.
When I first met Seth Sternberg, one of the co-founders of Honor, he began our conversation by recounting a visit to his mother in Connecticut in which he witnessed her declining driving ability. That single observation prompted Seth to think about options for his mother as she grew older. He didn’t like any of them.
Seth and his co-founders studied the market of 50,000 home care agencies and 1.5M care providers and came to a simple conclusion: it wasn’t good enough for our parents, or for the people who care for our parents. So they set out to build Honor. Honor is creating a trusted home caregiving service (with care professionals who are heavily screened, and then paid significantly more than average) that will provide flexibility to families. When care happens, visibility is paramount—a single platform connects the caregiver, the senior, and the family through an in-home, custom appliance and companion mobile software.
Honor gets to the heart of one of the largest issues our country (and the world) faces in healthcare. It is a question that in some ways, will define this generation: How will we care for the elderly? There is hardly a more important investment that my partner, Halle, and I felt we could make. Sometimes we’re lucky enough to come across entrepreneurs that look at a challenge this daunting and decide that they want to dedicate the rest of their careers to solving it. Supporting Seth, Sandy, Cameron, Monica, Phaedra, Renn and the rest of the Honor team to remake eldercare is an incredible privilege—we are truly humbled by the team’s ambition.
Every day, I worry about my parents and my sibling growing older. It is difficult to imagine them living in a nursing home, unable to live comfortably as they age. Honor’s goal is clear: “To keep our parents in their homes for as long as we possibly can.” I’m already feeling better about their future.
Interested in joining Honor’s diverse team? They’re hiring.
The Honor executive team