During care, patients’ experience of defecating could be far from comfortable. Being bedridden for several weeks, these patients rely on bedpans and urinals to relieve themselves. However, these traditional bedpans and urinals are uncomfortable, heavy and embarrassing. They could leave patients feeling exposed and undignified.
Izac Ron, the Chief Executive Officer, discovered how unpleasant these conventional bedpans were when a close family member got sick. Thus, hoping to make the toilet event a more respectful experience for the patients and their caregivers, he came up with the idea of Goloo, an innovative company dedicated to inventing disposable bedpans for adults.
Founded in 2008 , Goloo has quickly gained recognition for its innovative solutions in the healthcare industry. Its inflatable and disposable bedpans and urinals are designed to provide patients with a more comfortable, hygienic and dignified experience. The products are made from eco-friendly materials and are lightweight and easy to use. Its innovative design is a significant departure from traditional bedpans and urinals and has been recognized as a game-changer in the healthcare industry.
As one of the ‘10 European Startups Shaking the Future of Healthcare in 2023,’ Goloo is leading the charge in improving patients’ experience of defecating. By prioritizing patient comfort, dignity and safety, Goloo transforms how patients interact with healthcare providers and empowers patients to take control of their health and well-being.
Let’s dive in to learn about Goloo’s operations that encapsulate the mission to improve patients’ defecation experience through innovative, comfortable and dignified solutions!
Goloo in Brief
Goloo A/S (Limited Company) is a private owned Danish company founded in 2008 by Izac and Helle Ron. The name has come out from “Go to the Loo.”
Izac Ron, the Chief Executive Officer, says, “It started with the idea of producing inflatable and disposable potty for children that are in the process of potty training. The first prototype was developed in our private home. This led to an international patent as Air Potty.”
Goloo offers today several patented disposable bedpans/urinal solutions for immobile users. The production is taking place in Denmark. The company has received several innovation awards and business growth awards.
Vision, Mission and Values
Vision: Goloo’s vision is to be the most preferred supplier of disposable bedpans and urinal solutions to all immobile users and patients all over the globe.
Mission: It is Goloo’s mission to make the toilet event a more respectful experience for the patients and their caregivers.
- The patient and caregivers are always in the centre of Goloo’s solutions.
- Improving hygiene (disposable)
- Improving working conditions for the caregivers
- Environment-friendly solutions
“The original idea for Goloo was born on a flight to a vacation with my family, where I have observed a little child with his mother trying desperately to use the lavatory, but each time the poor boy was too frightened to use it, so they went back and forth to their seats with no success – until it ended poorly,” says Izac.
“Right there, I thought to myself, that a solution for children in his age, of which are in the process of getting rid of diapers and are potty training, may be found. I said to my wife, that a solution to that must be found. A kind of compact potty that you can carry around (inflatable), that doesn’t need to be cleaned (disposable), can be sealed and some absorbend to make sure no spil, etc. So, I spent the rest of the flight describing and sketching some disposable ideas with inflatable construction (I have a degree in mechanical engineering) as they are compact before use and can be having around in your bag and stuff like that. After use, you can just dispose it like with diapers. The funny thing is, that I forgot all about it after we came back home.”
He continues, “Some months later, we saw a program in the television, about common people representing their inventions/ideas to a group of experts for a commercial evaluation where the winner would have her/his idea manufactured and branded. As we were sitting there, I told to my wife that we should have had the idea from the flight, the inflatable potty – to this show. Later the same evening, I was searching on the internet for ideas within this area, thinking there would probably be many of them, as most parents are familiar with this challenge. But surprisingly only few, of which non were working as my idea.”
“That was literally the kick start of Goloo’s amazing journey! As from here, step by step, the invention becomes clearer, working on it in our spare time. After making the first prototype at home, and doing some commercial benchmark, we realized that we have something unique here. So, we decided to register it as a patent – Air Potty.”
Converting Air Potty to a Bedpan
Izac further wanted to fit the Air Potty solution with the needs of senior adults and caregivers involved. “When a close family member got sick, we discovered how unpleasant conventional bedpans were. Using traditional bedpans that are made of cardboard, plastic or steel is hard for the body with their thin edges. Goloo’s inflatable bedpan is round-shaped (like air madras) and soft to lie on. Therefore the name Softloo.”
He explained, “Further, we thought also how to improve the working conditions for the caregiver. We found out, that by keeping the same technique as the patented Air Potty but resizing its shape we ended up with the inflatable bedpan – Softloo, as it is soft to use.”
Goloo’s Bedpan Products
Goloo provides four solutions:
Softloo: An inflatable and disposable bedpan for bedridden patients. Implied by its name, Softloo is a comfortable, discrete and hygienic alternative to the traditional bedpan. The Softloo is accompanied by a user-friendly pump, which ensures that it is quickly inflated and ready to be used. Simply place the Softloo under the patient as you would do with a traditional bedpan. When finished, the Softloo is removed. Throw paper and gloves into the Softloo, deflate it and close it with help from the adhesive strips before you dispose it to the bin.
Easyloo: A disposable bedpan bag designed for commode chairs and toilet seats (easy to use). As the name implies, the Easyloo is a more user-friendly, discrete and hygienic alternative to the traditional bedpan. The product has a strong and intelligible adhesive, making fixing to the chair or seat easy. Here, the Easyloo forms a cover that protects underneath the chair against urine and faeces, saving you from unnecessary and time-consuming cleaning under challenging working position. After use, the Easyloo is easily removed and closed using the integrated strings. Dispose it to the bin and you are finished.
Uniloo : Uniloo is a disposable urinal bag designed for men and women equipped with a scale up to 1.0 liter. It is a lighter, more discrete and hygienic alternative to the tradition urinal. Uniloo is supported by inflatable features, which are inflated using the accompanying pump. The inflatable construction stabilizers around the sides of the Uniloo prevent the urinal from collapsing while the inflatable ring towards the opening ensures that the Uniloo is firmly attached to the body so waste and leaking is prevented. When the Uniloo is attached, the light, yet durable, material ensures that the Uniloo is easy to hold until finished and gentle for the body. Then the Uniloo is simply removed and closed using the adhesive tape strips. Dispose it and you are good to go. The Uniloo can also be used for emptying catheters or as a vomit bag.
Gowash: Gowash is a practical inflatable and disposable wash bowl designed for the Health Care sector. The product can be used for various procedures such as hair and body wash. Soaking for instance an infected hand or foot. It is simple to use and dispose.
All Goloo’s solutions are equipped with a removable absorbent pad. Thus, in case of testing the urine with sticks or collecting the urine for a different purpose, can be easily done.
Taking a User-Friendly Approach
All of Goloo’s solution are carefully designed with a focus on a user-friendly approach, so only a short introduction is needed in most cases. The philosophy of Goloo’s concept is to have the necessary solution/s for the targeted patient stored just by her/him and not in a distanced storage room. In this way, the process of caregiving in this regard starts and ends by the patient.
Further, after use, the Goloo product can be dumped directly to the bin just next to the patient. The absorbing pad will significantly reduce any unpleasant odour . A discreet way to safeguard the patient’s private sphere. For instance, if the Softloo is to be used, then after inflating it, the caregiver can use the same technique for installing under the patient as with a traditional bedpan, whatever technique he/she is using. After use, dispose paper towels, gloves, etc. into the Softloo. Then, inflate – seal – dump into the bin. Job is done!
Goloo’s products come in conveniently sized packages that can be stored close to the patient. On all the packages, there are user instructions. Grab it, use, seal and dispose it after use.
Getting Involved with the Developing Process
“During the developing process, we were working very closely with hospital personnel, listening to their and their patients experiences and input. As in all new inventions, you will be meeting obstacles on your way, that you wouldn’t have had thought of. Both of technical and human characters. Solving these challenges make you come to work happy and proud,” says Izac.
He continues, “Nevertheless, this fruitful cooperation process has led us to the solutions we are successfully offering and selling today. Our production error rate is less then 0.1%, due to continuous investments in our production line. All our products are CE certificated and traceable down to the batch.”
“That said, we are always open-minded for new challenges and aware of the changes that the caregiving area is facing. However, we still stick to our motto – If It Is Not Broken, Don’t Change it!”
Scaling 2023 and Ahead
“Our strategy is to find the right dealers/partners for Goloo outside Denmark, wherever it is with no limitation. To support that, we will exhibit at the MEDICA trade fair in Düsseldorf also this year,” says Izac.
“We are already represented in some European countries and are in a process with others in North America, Hong Kong and Middle east. It is our experience that Goloo’s products are simple to use and to implement.”
“We have many wonderful stories that highlight Goloo’s contribution in improving the lives of our patients, but if I emphasized one of them, that would be the new state of the art hospital Godstrup in the Midt Region in Jutland, Denmark,” says Izac.
“This successful story was a fruit of two years of close cooperation with the hospital management and our sales manager and partner Tommy Vesterlund. This hospital was put into service a little year ago. The hospital is technically designed to only offer Goloo’s solutions for the patients. No traditional or other bedpan/urinal products can be used. There are non bedpan washers installed, so high infrastructure construction costs pr. M2 were saved. The hospital contains more than 400 patients, all in single rooms. Each one of these rooms is equipped with all Goloos’ solutions, just been 1:1 with Goloo’s philosophy – Care giving starts and ends by the patient.”