Category: Featured

CVS Health’s Head of Enterprise Virtual Health Weighs-in: ‘What’s Next’ for Telehealth at CVS, Aetna


What are the BIG questions a BIG healthcare company like CVS Health is trying to answer when it comes to virtual care and creating the healthcare business model of the future? I’ve got Dr. Creagh Milford, CVS Health’s Head of Enterprise Virtual Health, who’s purview covers both CVS Pharmacy (9,000+ stores including 1,100 Minute Clinics) and Aetna, which provides health insurance to 39 million people.

Creagh’s big concern right now: how to weave together existing care models with virtual so 1) the consumer has a single front door and 2) the provider workforce – which includes everyone from pharmacists to primary care docs and beyond – is coordinated and working together. As you’ll hear, there’s a lot of thinking about “pivot points,” or where the patient and provider meet in the virtual-and-in-person ecosystem. The goal is to make those interactions easy and seamless – for both patient and provider alike – and we get into the strategic thinking, clinical operations, and tech underpinnings that are evolving to make those transitions possible.

Long-term, Creagh believes that healthcare consumers have “voted with their fingertips” and that virtual care is here to stay, but as part of a hybrid model in which questions about quality and cost are still being worked out. Will incentives ultimately realign to make virtual care more enticing across the healthcare system? What types of technology will be next to augment the hundreds of thousands of virtual visits a year coming out of Minute Clinic, or happening as part of an Aetna plan benefit? Here’s how one of the biggest healthcare companies in the country is driving virtual care forward. Watch now!

#HealthTechDeals Episode 25: Biofourmis, Reify Health, Nex Health, and Amae Health

In this week’s episode of Health Tech Deals, everyone cheats on each other: Eugene Borukhovich is the guest host replacing Jess! Eugene is cheating on Jim Joyce, while I cheat on Jess; though Jess has cheated on me with Eugene before! Jess is on a cult retreat in Costa Rica, but Eugene and I have some deals to discuss: Biofourmis raises $300 million; Reify Health raises $220 million; Nex Health raises $125 million; and Amae Health raises “several million.”

-Matthew Holt

April Fools….Data Driven Analysis


I have always thought that THCB almost always had an April fools post. I mean never on the Epic scale–today they’re merging with the other Epic, the Fornite gang–but most years I’d have said we had one. So in an effort to avoid the work I should be doing I went back to to archives to look and find the truth.

THCB started in August 2003 and in April 2005 the “tradition” started with this very worthy & not very clever April Fool about how George W Bush had signed national health care into law. The nothing more April Foolish until 2009 when then TCHB editor John Irvine wrote a piece about me joining Cato.

I got going on the whole thing in 2010 when just after the ACA was passed I declared that THCB and all its various contributors were finding other stuff to do. (They’re all basically back on #THCBGang these days!). The theory was that health care was now solved and we were going to cover fly fishing and renewable energy. If I had just bought that Tesla stock…

So now we were getting into the swing of it and yet no more fools for 4 years! The next one was a goodie though. At the time I was railing against the term mHealth which was battling my preferred term Health 2.0 as the definitional term for the sector. Neither term realized that “digital health” was winning. I explained that we were renaming Health 2.0 “mHealth & Associates” and that employees were going to be referred to as mHealth Ass. and Indu thought I was the “biggest mHealth Ass”. The wonderful coda to this is about 3 weeks later Indu and I met our then most important client, Holly Potter at Kaiser Permanente. She asked us when the name change was happening!! I still tease her about that when I see her!

Then another 4 year gap. In 2018 I revealed that Trump had appointed me to run the VA. I also predicted war with Russia in 2021. So wasn’t too far off! Then we hit a roll, in 2019 I scooped the world with the news that Facebook was entering the EMR business….not too far from the truth.

Finally in 2020 Michael Millenson told us that Trump was urging Covid sufferers to only get care at for-profit facilities. As it turned out, given how well so many hospital systems have done in the pandemic, he may not have been joking.

So in 19 years we have run 7 April Fools. Which by my calculation suggests that THCB is about 35% foolish. Which I guess is lower than I thought.

Matthew Holt is the publisher and main fool at THCB

WTF Health: Why Aren’t You Part of The Advancement League?


For healthcare leaders who are “committed to community and career happiness” there is the Advancement League, a membership org dedicated to helping create the right circumstances and connections for both. Co-founders Alex Maiersperger and Antwan Williams tell us about the career development activities Advancement League has become known for, how they’re helping healthcare professionals at all levels of their career, and why their emphasis on community impact is important to anyone with a healthcare role. From ViVE 2022 in Miami, we also talk about getting together for Advancement League’s signature event, Young Health Leader Summit in Raleigh, North Carolina, on August 3-5, 2022.

#HealthTechDeals Episode 19: Brightline, Brightside, OssoVR, Podimetrics, AmplifyMD

This episode of Health Tech Deals is brought to you from the parking lot of a MacDonald’s in New Mexico. Yes, Jess is driving cross country from Florida! She and I hash out some health tech deals that happened this week: Brightline raises $105 million; Brightside raises $50 million; OssoVR raises $66 million; Podimetrics raises $41 million; and AmplifyMD raises $23 million.

-By Matthew Holt

IDIH Week 2022 on Active and Heathy Aging in Time of COVID– including US workshop 12 ET/9PT, Monday 21st


IDIH Week 2022 starts this coming Monday! It is a 4-day FREE online event hosted by Catalyst & our partner organizations that is dedicated to researchers, innovators, care providers and users associations dealing with Digital Health for Active and Healthy Ageing (AHA). IDIH Week is a unique occasion for R&I stakeholders from the US, Europe, and beyond to explore opportunities for international cooperation in the field of Digital Health for Active and Healthy Ageing, through information, networking and co-creation sessions that will be held between March 21 and March 24.

The team at Catalyst will be running a US Regional Workshop on Monday from 12pm ET/9am PT – 2pm ET/11am PT. The Workshop, titled The Impact of COVID-19 on the Shared Priorities for International Cooperation in Active and Healthy Ageing, aims to bring a US perspective to the findings of the IDIH Digital Health Transformation Forum around the areas of data governance, interoperability by design, and digital inclusion, and how these have been impacted by COVID-19. Check out the IDIH Week agenda available here.

Panelists for the workshop are author, healthcare journalist, educator, and activist Nancy B. Finn, health lawyer and privacy expert Deven McGraw, innovation consultant and digital health strategist Iana Simeonov, specialist in media and gerontology Mandy Salomon, and smart home and aging expert George Demiris. Catalyst’s Indu Subaiya & Matthew Holt will be moderating the discussion.

Register for IDIH Week 2022 here

To join us: If you are not registered to the IDIH Platform: register here and select the sessions of the IDIH Week 2022 in which you are interested.If you are already registered in the IDIH Platform: access your Agenda and add the sessions of the IDIH Week 2022 in which you are interested.

More details on IDIH Week below

Continue reading…

Meet Teen Mental Health App BeMe Health & Their “TikTok” Type Approach to Behavioral Health Care


Teen mental health has hit crisis-level concern these days, and seed-funded startup BeMe Health is hoping to help with a digital mental health app purpose-built just for teens. Fast Company labeled the app as “TikTok for teen mental health,” which is a spot-on description of its exciting, social-media-like look and feel, but a bit of an undersell of the evidence-backed behavioral health care the app is actually providing.

Co-founders Nicki Tessler and Mandeep Dhillon introduce us to BeMe, and tell us why they believe the TikTok-like approach they’re taking – with its emphasis on short, engaging video content that’s “served up” rather than “sought out” thanks to smart algorithms that link mental health goals with in-app behavior and engagement patterns – is key to winning the buy-in of digitally-native teens.

While apps like Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok have lately received criticism for their role in harming teens’ mental health with algorithms that drive content consumption to increase ad revenue, BeMe is hoping to use those same tactics to drive content consumption that will increase a teen’s ability to manage stress, learn coping skills, build resilience, identify their emotions, and even help coach one another.

Beyond product design and market fit (winning teens is not enough, parents need a place in this too) Nicki and Mandeep also talk us through BeMe’s business model, which is evolving along with the app’s development. The startup’s $7 million dollar seed funding is “connected” to payers – nine of the top 10 health plans, says Nicki – and so the initial strategy is based on a per-member-per-month model and will be launching in coordination with pediatricians and therapists, as well as with schools, before it goes direct-to-consumer. Still the question remains: If mom, dad, or the doc recommends it, will a discerning teen really will want to do? Listen in to find out if BeMe’s sticky videos, teen advisory board, and algorithms sound like they’ll bridge the generation gap and start shaping a different kind of mental health care for this important phase of life.

Nate Maslak, CEO of Ribbon Health

Nate Maslak, CEO of Ribbon Health talked with me late last year (2021) after his $40m round from General Catalyst and Andreesen Horowitz. We dug into the really thorny problem of information about physicians. This has so many facets and ramifications but most people only see it when their doctor somehow isn’t in their health plan’s network. But it’s much, much more than that. Nate joined me in nerding out on this topic and explaining how Ribbon is working to fix it — Matthew Holt

THCB Gang Episode 73, Dec 2 1pm PT – 4pm ET

#THCBGang is back from its Turkey day snooze! Joining Matthew Holt (@boltyboy) at 1pm PT 4pm ET Thursday for an hour of topical and sometime combative conversation on what’s happening in health care and beyond will be patient activist, author & entrepreneur Robin Farmanfarmaian (@Robinff3);  Queen of all employer benefits related issues Jennifer Benz (@Jenbenz); medical historian Mike Magee (@drmikemagee); and patient safety expert and all around wit Michael Millenson (@MLMillenson)

You can see the video below live at 1pm/4pm or it’s kept here for posterity. If you’d rather listen than watch, the audio is preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels

THCB Gang Episode 71, Nov 4

Joining Matthew Holt (@boltyboy) on THCBGang Thursday were fierce patient activist Casey Quinlan (@MightyCasey); cardiologist & provocateur Anish Koka (@anish_koka); patient activist, author & entrepreneur Robin Farmanfarmaian (@Robinff3); and THCB regular writer Kim Bellard (@kimbbellard).

We got into the “what are parents thinking about schools and what happens to politics as a result”, and then into the children’s COVID-19 vaccine, then how remote patient and now remote therapeutics monitoring, and ending with where we thought AI was going! Quite the conversation!

You can see the video below but if you’d rather listen to the episode, the audio is preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels.


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