Today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess can’t figure out what’s going on with health tech investors. Episode 156 feels like rummaging through a garage sale… First up is mirrors, mirrors, mirrors, with a total of $225 million invested: Tonal gets $110 million, Tempo gets $60 million, and Fiture gets $65 million. Next up is socks; Siren, which makes socks, added $9 million to their B round, which already has $11 million. Our next category is doctors, aka startups from Europe with “doctor” in the name: DrDoctor gets £3 million in an A, HomeDoctor scored €3.7 million, and Your.MD gets $30 million. Finally, we have raccoons! Raccoon.World closes a $900 million seed round to provide physiotherapy in a video game platform. —Matthew Holt
By JESSICA DaMASSA, WTF HEALTH
Even though kids make up 20% of the total national patient population, investments in startups that use tech to improve their care is, at best, a dismal 1% of the total investments made in digital health and health tech each year. Why is there such a lack of innovation (and investment in innovation) in Pediatrics? Omkar Kulkarni, Chief Innovation Officer at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, talks us through the challenges that have so-far stymied a health tech takeover of the pediatric care market and how KidsX is out to change all that. Already, Omkar’s recruited several dozen of the world’s leading Children’s Hospitals and Pediatric care units into KidsX, bringing with them supportive payers and investors who want to add to the collaborative consortium’s ability to drive change into this stretch of the healthcare continuum. These “champions” aim to create more targeted opportunities for startups who want to pilot or co-develop peds-focused solutions with the leading pediatric care providers who will ultimately use them, the payers who will ultimately reimburse for them, and the investors who ultimately will fund scaling them. Startups are currently being recruited until October 7, 2020 to participate in the KidsX accelerator’s first cohort and it’s a pretty sweet deal. The bottom line: Lots of support, no equity take; this is NOT just for early-stage startups and it’s NOT just for health tech. Healthcare incumbents in care delivery orgs, health plans, and pharma companies are also invited to join in, along with those healthcare investors who want early-access to emerging pediatric startups and solutions, or a seat at the table as KidsX plans for its own investment fund.
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess and I discuss UnitedHealth Group acquiring DivvyDose for $300 million, which is a knock off of PillPack. Is there anything left for them to buy? We cover many more deals in Episode 155—Noyo raises $12 million in a series A, helping health plans exchange data, Medigate raises $30 million working on cybersecurity for connected devices in hospitals, OnCall raises $6 million helping health systems launch their own virtual care platforms, RapidAI raises $25 million to improve MRI and CT quality using AI to layer those images, and Medefer raises £10 million offering telehealth and referrals to patients within the NHS. —Matthew Holt
By JESSICA DaMASSA, WTF HEALTH
It’s the telehealth market reality check you’ve been waiting for! “Rogue” digital health consultant Dr. Lyle Berkowitz unpacks the numbers and the market potential for virtual care from the unique vantage point of a primary-care-physician-turned-health-tech-entrepreneur with nothing to lose. Having been 1) a clinician, 2) the Director of Innovation at Northwestern Medicine, 3) the founder of a health tech startup (Health Finch) that successfully exited to Health Catalyst, and 4) the former Chief Medical Officer at one of telemedicine’s biggest players, MDLive, few can boast such a wide-reaching, deep understanding of the inner workings of both the innovation and incumbent sides of the virtual care market — AND have a willingness to talk about it all with complete candor!
This is an analyst’s perspective on the telehealth market — with a twist of insider expertise — so expect to hear some good rationale behind predictions about how much care will remain virtual once hospitals and doctor’s offices return to normal, how “real” health system enthusiasm is for building out telehealth capacity to execute on the “digital front door” idea, and whether or not all these well-funded telehealth startups will have what it takes to win market share from traditional care providers.
BONUS on Primary Care: Is this the area of medicine that’s going to be the “battleground” where digital health and virtual care companies will be going head-to-head with incumbents for market share? Lyle says 50-plus percent of primary care “can and should be automated, delegated, virtualized, etc.” and boldly predicts that in 10-20 years we won’t even have primary care physicians anymore. Tune in to find out why starting at the 8:00 minute mark, where we shout out Crossover Health, Oak Street Health, Iora Health, and more.
Telehealth die-hards, don’t think for a second I’d miss this chance to also get some input on Teladoc-Livongo, Amwell, Doctor On Demand, SOC Telemed, the impending IPOs there, digital first health plans, virtual primary care, health systems (who Lyle hopes “don’t shoot themselves in the foot” with their opportunity to jump into the space) and, ultimately, who’s really going to ”WIN” in virtual care moving forward. For this, jump in at 17:00 minutes and hold on!
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess is in Jacksonville hanging out with Jackson the dog and trying to replace me with @barkyboy. On Episode 153, we cover the biggest IPO we’ve seen yet—GoodRx—with a valuation of $18 billion, which is more than Teladoc, Livongo, and even Cardinal Health. In other news, Olive gets $106 million bringing their total to $220 million; Olive is a back office automation system using AI for hospitals and this round is practically financed by royalty. Bright Health gets $500 million for their health plan; they’ve raised about $1.5 billion and are planning to expand into more markets. Finally Osso VR raised $14 million in a series A, helping surgeons practice performing surgeries through their VR platform. —Matthew Holt
By JESSICA DaMASSA, WTF HEALTH
Digital Mental Health startups continue to scale up — in customers, revenues, and investments — as the covid19 pandemic wears on. One of these companies, Ginger, has tripled its revenue this past year, expanded its client base to count more than 200 health plans and self-insured employers, and, for good measure, just added a fresh $50M Series D to their coffers. How much more money can investors put into digital mental health startups? Are things “frothy” in this space, or is investment just “catching up” to meet a latent demand that’s just really been brought to light? And, what is one of this category’s leaders planning to do now that they’re extra flush with cash? (Don’t forget, they’re sitting on a $35M round that closed late 2019…)
Ginger’s co-founder & COO Karan Singh and CEO Russell Glass join us to weigh in on the mental healthcare market’s state-of-play, including the buzz around their own business as both a potential acquisition target and a potential acquirer of additional behavioral health tech. We cover everything from investment to healthcare incumbent’s recent cries for more clinical validation, but my favorite part of this whole interview is when we start talking about the competition and tackle Lyra Health’s recent $100M raise and $1.1B valuation. Tune in around the 15:55-minute mark for some very DETAILED competitive analysis about Lyra-versus-Ginger from Ginger’s own CEO.
As this market gets more crowded, competition heats up, and healthcare consumers receive the benefit of more solutions to access at lower prices, Karan and Russ also help me speculate on what’s ahead, including whether or not they think we’ll see a “digital mental health equivalent” of a massive game-changing-market-moving deal like we saw when Teladoc merged with Livongo to shake up of both the virtual care and chronic condition management spaces.
By JESSICA DAMASSA
Despite the fact that kids make up 20% of our national patient population and that their parents are likely just the tech-savvy market of health consumers that most digital health companies are targeting with their own virtual care solutions, very little has been done to use technology to ‘transform’ the way that they take care of their kids. One of the founders hoping to push this market into a growth spurt is Naomi Allen, co-founder & CEO of pediatric behavioral health company Brightline.
From seed to Series A in just 8 months ($25M total funding), Brightline is already looking to scale out its full-stack clinical model to help tackle the behavioral health issues that are often under-diagnosed and under-treated in kids. Naomi says that 75% of all severe mental illness manifests before age 14, but that only 1 in 5 kids will ever even get a behavioral health diagnosis. And more shocking? Of those that are diagnosed, only 1 in 5 of those kids will ever even receive any care.
The supply-and-demand equation is off — stymied not only by a clinician shortage, but by literally poor reimbursement from health plans concerned about the lack of quality metrics, measurements, and processes in pediatric behavioral health despite the prevalence of those kinds of quality guidelines around adult mental health care.
So, how is Brightline going to fix this? Technology, clinicians, coaches. A full-stack clinical model with a “scaffolding” of support for parents built around it using telehealth, digital tools, and, for those health plans, metrics. Tune in to find out more about their business model, what Brightline’s kids are saying, and how you can find their services yourself if you think your child might need help.Continue reading…
We are forgetting about health tech, and celebrating Chicago-oo! Just kidding, today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess asks me about Truepill getting a 75M Series C after just closing their B, Sana Benefits getting $20.8M, and Decent getting $10M, both of which are in the space of health benefits & insurance for small business have raised funding, MDLive closing a $50M round for their Virtual Primary Care (but weren’t they going public?), Owl Insights getting $15M from Ascension and Blue Ventures, and Boehringer Ingelheim & Click Therapeutics working on a $500M deal together on a DTx platform for Schizophrenia patients. –Matthew HoltContinue reading…
It’s Health in 2 Point 00’s 150th Episode or Sesquicentennial anniversary! On this episode, we have the return of Softbank money—$100M goes to Biofourmis platform for AI & Clinical Trials. Next, Amwell prices their IPO at $14-16 a share, and Grand Rounds raises $175 million led by the Carlyle Group. Finally, we have real foul play to report – former Zocdoc CEO Cyrus Massoumi filed a lawsuit accusing his fellow cofounders and CFO of foul play, so Jess asks me to dish the dirty details. —Matthew Holt
On today’s Health in 2 Point 00, Jessica is distracted playing video games, and rants about the unbearable maleness of wearables. Meanwhile Komodo Health raises $50m for more analytics (presumably of patients playing Pong), Picnic Health gets $25m as PHRs will not go away, Hazel Health gets $33 million to take telehealth back to school, and then there’s Amazon Halo — and our stars’ alter egos make an appearance — Matthew Holt