Cigna is making digital mental health services available to its entire nationwide network of 14 million members, and it’s selected health tech startup, Ginger to deliver the new benefit. Cigna’s Chief Medical Officer for Behavioral Health, Doug Nemecek, and Ginger’s CEO, Russ Glass, stop by to discuss the deal and why Cigna is making such a commitment to expanding its behavioral health offering.
This is about more than just dealing with mental health in the aftermath of Covid; Cigna is actually looking at Ginger’s behavioral health coaching model as preventative. Will other health plans follow suit? Could expanded coverage for lower-acuity mental health services become commonplace? Doug talks about what’s ahead for mental health care from a population health standpoint, and how services like Ginger’s give primary care docs a standard, trusted provider to which they can refer patients when it comes to increasingly common concerns like depression and anxiety. For Russ and Ginger, who talk about using virtual care to right the “supply-and-demand imbalance” in mental health care, what will more than doubling their current client base (from 10 million to 24 million) do to their own ability to provide supply? It’s a moment-of-truth for the business of digital mental health and we’ve got the details!
On Health in 2 Point 00, Jess and I talk about TDOC earnings before getting into today’s deals. First, Virta Health scores $133 million in a round led by Tiger Global for its keto diabetes reversal program. Seqster raises $12 million in its Series A, and there are some interesting investors in this one. MSK startup Kaia Health raises $75 million, bringing its total to $123 million. Online pharmacy Capsule raises $300 million, bringing its total to $570 million. Finally Accolade acquires virtual primary care platform PlushCare in a $450 million deal.—Matthew Holt
Thursday’s #THCBGang was another with a special guest. Matthew Holt (@boltyboy) was joined by regulars, employer health expert Jennifer Benz (@jenbenz); patient safety expert and all around wit Michael Millenson (@MLMillenson); WTF Health host & Health IT girl Jessica DaMassa (@jessdamassa); & Consumer advocate & CTO of Carium Health, Lygeia Ricciardi (@Lygeia).
Our special guest was Shantanu Nundy @DrNundy who is Chief Medical Officer of Accolade and more importantly author of new book Care After Covid. We dug into the question about what the post-covid health care system will look like, while I let slip why I’m grumpy Accolade just paid $450m for Plushcare! (You have to wait for the very end for that!)
Then video is up below. If you’d rather listen, the audio is preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels.
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, we’re back from our 200th episode celebration! In Episode 201, we have an all-European funding deals episode for you, and I even attempt to answer every story in an accent relevant to the company. First, French insurance company Alan raises €185 million. Scottish company Current Health raises $43 million in a Series B for remote patient monitoring. Thankfully we have an English company in the mix, Proximie raises $38 million, bringing their total to $48 million – they do AR for the OR. Kry, a Swedish telehealth company with 3 million visits, raises $316 million bringing their total to $570M. Finally, German company Caresyntax raises $100 million bringing their total to $177M doing data analytics around surgery.—Matthew Holt
Sharecare, the population-health-slash-care-navigator of the stars (literally, celebrity doc Dr. Oz is a co-founder, and Oprah’s Harpo Productions, Sony Pictures Television, and Discovery Communications are partners) is about to hit the public market via a $4-Billion SPAC IPO with Falcon Capital. Jeff Arnold, co-founder, CEO, and Chairman drops in to talk about how he plans to make Sharecare even more successful than the first healthcare business he founded-and-exited, WebMD.
The Sharecare ecosystem is sprawling. The company’s been around for more than a decade, acquired about a dozen digital health point solutions and health tech businesses, and built a population health analytics platform that’s interwoven consumer, employer, provider, and health plan data for years. Now, the business is even getting into providing Health Security verifications for hotels, restaurants, and the like to prove that their facilities meet guidelines for health and hygiene protocols, cleaning standards, physical distancing and other health requirements implemented in the Covid-19 era.
So, how does Jeff anticipate meeting shareholder expectations for growth? The investor deck touts a future of recurring revenue driving sustainable 20% year-over-year growth; Jeff talks through each of Sharecare’s verticals in detail so we can learn how.
Believe it or not, Jessica DaMassa and I have been banging out digital health tech & funding news for 200 episodes of this oh-so-cute little show. To celebrate, after several takeover episodes when Jess replaced me with a number of special guests, this time four of the digital health & health care digerati replaced Jess to ask me some oh so serious questions. It’s a special edition with guest appearances from Glen Tullman, Eugene Borukhovic, Lisa Suennen & Ian Morrison, as well as plenty of BS from us two regulars! — Matthew Holt
Healthcare SPAC-trackers interested in placing bets on value-based primary care for the lucrative Medicare Advantage market will love hearing Cano Health’s CEO Marlow Hernandez dive into the details behind his company’s $4.4B valuation and 7,000% three-year growth rate. Cano Health’s clinics provide “primary care plus” for 100,000 seniors, targeting the particular needs of underserved Latino senior markets in Florida, Texas, Nevada, and Puerto Rico. With $1.4B in revenue, Cano’s business looks similar to publicly-traded Oak Street Health – which boasts a market cap of $14B.
Hoping to replicate what they’ve started in Florida (where Cano Health boasts a long-standing relationship serving Humana’s Medicare Advantage members) the company is building partnerships with major national MA plan providers like UnitedHealthcare, Anthem, Centene and Devoted and scaling up its network of more than 550 primary care physicians. A surprising component of the business plan? Cano Health’s health tech stack! Marlow explains how the care delivery co developed its own practice management software for care navigation, billing, and back-office admin and is already licensing it to more than 1,000 independently owned medical centers.
Tune in for more on the scale-up and scale-out plans for Cano Health before it starts trading at $CANO. The planned merger with Jaws Acquisition Corp (the SPAC led by Barry Sternlicht of Starwood Capital fame) is “imminent.”
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, I air some of my grudges as we get into our deals for the day. In the third extension of their Series C, Medable gets another $78 million bringing their total to $217 million. Olive acquires Empiric Health, expanding into surgical data analytics – where does this fit in with Sean Lane’s five-point strategic plan? Finally, Papa gets a $60 million raise and Anthem, Blackstone and K Health launch a joint venture. —Matthew Holt
Today on Health in 2 Point 00, Jess claims to be blameless for the drama between Jonathan Bush and Glen Tullman. On Episode 198, we talk about Microsoft buying Nuance for $16 billion and $3 billion in debt – is Microsoft taking over healthcare, and is this going to slow Nuance down? Cohere Health raises $36 million in a Series B, working on improving prior authorizations between health plans and providers. We wrap up with a lightning round of IPO rumors regarding Privia Health, VillageMD, and Bright Health.—Matthew Holt