Everything you always wanted to know about the Health Care system. But were afraid to ask.
Category: Matthew Holt
Matthew Holt is the founder and publisher of The Health Care Blog and still writes regularly for the site and hosts the #THCBGang and #HealthInTwoPoint00 video shows/podcasts. He was co-founder of the Health 2.0 Conference and now also does advisory work mostly for health tech startups at his consulting firm SMACK.health.
Each week I’ve been adding a brief tidbits section to the THCB Reader, our weekly newsletter that summarizes the best of THCB that week (Sign up here!). Then I had the brainwave to add them to the blog. They’re short and usually not too sweet! (And yes, this week’s is a tad late!) –Matthew Holt
In this week’s health care tidbits, you may be wondering what happened to health policy under Joe Biden. He said no to Medicare for All because instead he was going to create a public option and lower the Medicare age to 60. Yet both those two policies seem to have vanished into the night. Presumably that’s because they think they’re a hard political sell and maybe that’s right. But why? This past week a massive study of American consumers shows that Medicare recipients are much happier with their experience than people with employer-based coverage. And employer based coverage is no better than Medicaid! To wit, the study showed:
Compared with those covered by Medicare, individuals with employer-sponsored insurance were less likely to report having a personal physician and were more likely to report instability in insurance coverage, difficulty seeing a physician because of costs, not taking medication because of costs, and having medical debt. Compared with those covered by Medicare, individuals with employer-sponsored insurance were less satisfied with their care.
Compared with individuals covered by Medicaid, those with employer-sponsored insurance were more likely to report having medical debt and were less likely to report difficulty seeing a physician because of costs and not taking medications because of costs. No difference in satisfaction with care was found between individuals with employer-sponsored private health insurance and those with Medicaid coverage.
I guess the new AHIP slogan is, “we’re just as good as Medicaid!” But you have to wonder, why are the rest of us being forced to consume an inferior product?
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess is trying to replace me with the other Matthew Holt. But on Episode 216, I am still around to talk about some deals. First, Datavant acquires Ciox Health in a $7 billion deal, aiming to create the nation’s largest health data ecosystem. Next, Avenue Health is a new company that has just been launched, working on seamless, end-to-end data integration and blockchain, and AllyAlign Health raises $300 million as a new Medicare advantage plan. Finally, Cerebral raises $127 million – this is like a Ro or Hims but specifically for mental health. —Matthew Holt
Amazon Cares already has customers, Clover has become a meme stock, Transcarent has got a Series B that they closed already, and OneDrop has hit 25 billion biometric data points – what the hell is going on in digital health? Today on Health in 2 Point 00, we still have lots of deals to cover. Monogram, an end-stage kidney disease company, raises $160 million. LetsGetChecked raises $150 million in a Series D – all of these at-home testing companies are getting a push because of COVID. Next, Lenus raises €50M in a Series A, making it the biggest ever single A round in Denmark. Transcarent gets $58 million in a Series B already, and Ada Health raises $90 million for their symptom assessment chatbot. —Matthew Holt
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess pokes fun at me because my primary care provider has acquired a Medicare provider – One Medical buys Iora Health for $2.1 billion in stock. This deal is curious because these are two very different organizations. Next, HumanFirst (formerly Elektra Labs) raises $12 million in a Series A, bringing their total to $15 million, working on distributed clinical trials. Medallion raises $20 million in a Series A to address barriers for digital health providers around state licensing rules, and Aunt Bertha raises $27 million working on the social determinants of health and getting social care resources to patients. Finally, Grand Rounds and Doctor on Demand acquire Included Health, an LGBTQ+ focused care navigation platform. —Matthew Holt
Each week I’ve been adding a brief tidbits section to the THCB Reader, our weekly newsletter that summarizes the best of THCB that week (Sign up here!). Then I had the brainwave to add them to the blog. They’re short and usually not too sweet!–Matthew Holt
In this week’s health care tidbits, I can’t quite leave the $3.5bn Babylon Health SPAC investor document alone. Yes, it’s crazy but not as crazy as you might think. Essentially it’s saying that it’s going to be a better tech enabled version of Oak Street or Agilon. Babylon has put less effort into the medical group management side of the puzzle than Oak Street or Agilon but it hasn’t done nothing. It’s been running GP clinics in the UK for years and now has two Medicare Advantage networks in California w 52k lives. It only did $79m in rev in 2020 but that was presumably mostly in software. They’re aiming for $320m in rev in 2021 (presumably mostly from the medical groups) & $710m in 2022.
In comparison Oak Street’s forecast is $1.3bn in 2021 and $2bn in 2022. So Babylon is shooting to be 25% of its size. Today’s Oak Street market cap is ~$14,5bn, so 25% of that is close to the $3.5bn Babylon is trying to get investors to pay.
Then there’s the story, which is that the bot tech can reduce all types of patient health spend which will increase the margin. Of course their actual mileage may vary. I do love the chart from their investor prez, which not only assumes that they can reduce medical spend abut also that they get to keep those savings long term. I’m not sure the “Partner” in the chart below will be as convinced.
This was the cause of much hilarity on this week’s #THCBGang.
As I said crazy but not completely crazy. And you never know, maybe better care?
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, we’re talking about our new conference in September: Policies, Techies, & VCs: What’s Next for Health Care. On Episode 213, Jess ask me about some massive deals. Thirty Madison gets $140 million – they are now a unicorn. Babylon Health is going public via a SPAC – $575 million expected to be raised during this with a $3.6 billion valuation. Coming out of stealth, Intrinsic raises $113 million in the eCommerce space — and Dr. Oz is in this one.—Matthew Holt
Today at Health in 2 Point 00, Jess and I are presenting at the Going Digital: Behavioral Health conference today — tune in later for that. On Episode 212, our buddies at DayTwo get $37 million for the gut microbiome. Hello Heart raises $45 million, bringing their total to $68.2 million – this is for high blood pressure management. Pack4U, which is like the knockoff version of Pill Pack, raises $20 million. Swedish telemedicine company Doktor.se raises $50 million, and Curebase raises $15 million for decentralized clinical trials. —Matthew Holt
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess gives us a little tour of Chicago before we dive into some deals. Noom raises $540 million, bringing their total to $657 million with a $4 billion valuation. What are they going to do now with all this money? Digital therapeutics company Akili raises $160 million – maybe this will bring them out of ADHD. Unmind, a mental health company out of the UK, raises $47 million, Eleanor Health raises $20 million for their addiction-focused mental health clinic, and finally Clearing raises $20 million in a Series A tackling chronic pain. —Matthew Holt
This week on Health in 2 Point 00, we’ve got big money, acquisitions, CVS Health starting its own decentralized clinical trials business, AND we’ve got Morgan Health. On Episode 210, Jess asks me about Babylon buying Meritage IPA, looking to add their digital front end to this doctors’ network, and Ro acquiring Modern Fertility for $225 million. Next, telehealth company Wheel gets $50 million in a Series B and digital pathology startup PathAI gets $165 million. Finally, SymphonyRM gets $25 million in a Series B. —Matthew Holt
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, we catch Jess on the road again! On Episode 209, Jess is shocked at Lyra’s $200 million raise, bringing their total to a whopping $675 million – and their valuation is somewhere in the $4 billion range. What does this mean for the mental health space? Next, DrFirst gets $50 million. They were doing e-prescribing back in the day, what are they up to now? Jasper Health raises $6.75 million for a new play in cancer navigation. Finally testing company Cue Health raises $235 million, bringing their total to $405 million, plus they’ve got some really big federal grants. —Matthew Holt
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