It was a sunny Thursday afternoon at the City Winery in Soho NYC, where Blueprint Health announced their newest crop of start-ups looking for a next round of funding to help fuel their growth. Blueprint Health is a start-up incubator with a focus on bringing some much-needed innovation to the healthcare industry. With the largest network of mentors with healthcare expertise of any accelerator and co-working space, Blueprint Health now has 46 companies in their start-up family - 87% of which are now generating revenue! Here's a summary of the recent class of start-ups that presented to an eager room full of potential partners, investors, customers and clients.
Leveraging big data to improve performance and care
Healthcare Informatics is a critical issue because of antiquated legacy systems, paper based records and the inability to connect various disparate databases. Mediquire, the first company that presented, aims to be a part of the solution by leveraging data collected in the hospital setting and providing real value in the form of improved care and cost containment. Specifically, Mediquire leverages data from electronic medical records (EMRs) to pinpoint areas of potential weakness, and then suggests training opportunities to help physicians where they need it most. It can scour hospital records to show docs their top 5 areas of weakness, and then offer targeted educational content in those areas, complete with peer-to-peer mentoring and best practice sharing. At its heart it is a unique data-driven performance improvement platform for healthcare organizations. The overall concept is to help hospitals personalize professional development on the part of clinicians by making it more precise, as well as to help provide the same standard of care across peer groups in the healthcare environment.
Avoiding unnecessary referrals
One out of three referrals from primary care docs to specialists are avoidable. And one out of five will result in duplicate or unnecessary imaging or tests. Enter RubiconMD, helping to redesign primary care by offering remote opinions from top specialists. These opinions prevent unnecessary referrals, improve care coordination and reduce patient wait time and travel burden. Since it’s launch, RubiconMD has shown a 30% reduction in unnecessary tests – which is huge! This not only helps the patients but also the doctor’s by allowing them to earn more money in an increasingly value-based system. A win-win all around.
Improving communication between EMTs and ER departments
If you are in a bad car accident, you’ll want to be sure the communication between the EMT and the ER department of the hospital you are being taken to, be unencumbered. Seconds matter in life or death situations where immediate information and action is needed. Unfortunately, due to the use of antiquated equipment and privacy issues, old systems currently in place are anything but unencumbered. These miscommunications can cause what are known as “false service activations”. These occur when for example, a cardiac unit is activated when it is unnecessary. It is estimated that these false service activations can cause up to seven thousand dollars for each unnecessary activation, leading to a yearly waste of three hundred and fifty thousand dollars a year per hospital. Twiage eliminates this issue by leveraging new technologies that allow for better communication between the EMT and the ER. It does this by providing a mobile app that delivers vital information about a patient from the ambulance to the emergency room, while on route to the hospital, so that doctors can move more quickly when the patient arrives. Running the Twiage app on a smartphone, an EMT can dictate notes and send them to the hospital as text, and also share photographs of a patient’s injuries, identification and EKG readings all in a safe and secure environment. Twiage is a great example of leveraging new technologies to improve communication, by targeting the ER, which will lead to better care and decreased waste in the overburdened healthcare system, as whole.
Making treatment consultations better
We all know that docs have little time to spend with patients. But did you know that they also get paid 1/10th as much doing treatment consultations as they do versus actual treatments? On the flip side, we know that patients often feel rushed, and often walk out of their doctor’s offices with more questions than answers. The new startup Decisive Health has devised a smart system that allows for physicians to make treatment consultations with patients ahead of time. This in turn allows for patients to not only be more informed once they get in front of the doctor, but also gives them the much-needed time to consider their various options and priorities before their actual consultation. So, once the doctor and patient are together they are both more informed and can have a shorter and more productive conversation about the next steps for their treatment plan.
Reducing hospital readmissions by improving post-op care
Preventable hospital readmissions cost the U.S. health care system $25 billion annually, but through the Affordable Care Act (ACA), hospitals are now incentivized to reduce readmissions. BoardRounds helps to manage and automate the post-discharge follow-up appointment process to improve the transition of care from the hospital back into the community. This helps to improve patient follow-ups, eliminate fees for hospital readmissions, and capture Medicare’s new “transitional care management” payments by physicians. If not reimbursed correctly, PCPs could stand to lose the incremental reimbursements, which are nearly twice what they would be for normal office visits. So, it’s truly a win-win all around. Patients get better care, doctors get paid more for their time and hospitals avoid penalty fees on readmissions.
Keeping tabs on loved ones far away
Many families have elderly loved one’s living on their own and far away from the rest of the family who would typically be checking up on them regularly. PulseBeat helps families keep a “pulse” on their elderly parents and loved ones via sensors and other connected devices. The company aggregates all the data to a centralized hub, with an algorithm that can help pick up potential issues before they arise. Daily 3 bullet points summaries are provided to families to truly maximized ease of care. This can help you feel at ease by providing real-time access to all information relevant to your loved one’s health.
Making research studies fast and easier to deploy
Researchers in academia, pharma, healthcare and consumer goods are constantly looking to evaluate new products, services or approaches. But it’s often hard to find patients and even more difficult to launch studies. ProofPilot leverages the latest in technological advances to provide a platform that makes the research study process simple, safe, secure and effective. Proof Pilot recruits participants and allows you to design complex randomized cohort research studies – complete with multiple arms of online and offline activities and multiple locations and study sites. The platform allows for the collection of data, with top security and fraud protections. It also utilizes the latest technology to collect real-time data via connected health devices, sensors and apps.
One thing is clear, the digital health start-up space in NYC is booming. It was so exciting to see the energy and enthusiasm of this year’s Blueprint Health start-up founders as they pitched their ideas and aimed to help fix any number of problems that plague the health care space in numerous ways. It will be the collective total of start-ups like these, attacking inefficiencies and improving outdated systems, that will start to impact the entire industry at large.
We believe it is imperative that we remain on the cusp of what is happening in the start-up digital health space. It is thru relationships with incubators like Blueprint Health that we try to constantly maintain a pulse on new innovations and how they might be applicable to our client’s businesses. If you’d like to learn more, please feel free to contact us.