(Original aricle on Medium.com)
For this #WomenCrushWednesdays, in the last week of September, #AtTheTable has the pleasure of interviewing a woman with exceptional strength and tenacity.
In honor of September being both Childhood Cancer and Lymphoma Awareness Month, meet the amazing Kezia Fitzgerald.
Describe your business. What is its main goal/function?
Kezia: Our mission at CareAline is to improve patient safety, comfort and healing. We do this with innovative vascular access line securement devices — sleeves and wraps that hold lines off the skin and in place, stabilizing them both on and off treatment, 24 hours a day.
Our simple design has been clinically tested to reduce line complications, improve patient safety and comfort, and reduce healthcare costs. The majority of our revenue comes from selling our products to hospitals, but we sell directly to patients and caregivers on CareAline.com as well.
Why did you decide to become a female founder? What inspired you to start your business?
Kezia: I developed the products for a very personal reason — my infant daughter, Saoirse, and I were both diagnosed with cancer in 2011. The experience of dealing with my daughter’s PICC and central lines led me to making the first sleeves and wraps to keep her safe while she was going through her treatments. They were so effective, that other families, nurses and doctors wanted to use them — this is when I realized the problem was bigger than just our family.
Saoirse’s disease, Neuroblastoma, was very aggressive, and she died in December 2011 at 18 months old. While it was a difficult decision, my husband and I decided that the sleeves and wraps were too important, and we needed to help other kids and adults in Saoirse’s honor. We started CareAline in 2012, and have been selling our products to hospitals and directly to patients since.