TTA’s May Flowers 3: Venrock’s health biz predictions; Boots for sale; Oracle Health’s struggles; acquisitions by Samsung, Legrand; TytoCare, Owlet, Humana, more!

 

 

A TON of news this week breaking before the US Memorial Day and UK’s bank holiday. Boots up for sale breaking up Alliance. Oracle Health will be struggling for the next two years. Cue Health sinking. Legrand is acquiring Enovation, Samsung Sonio ultrasound, and LG jumps into home health. And big VC Venrock issues its predictions for the health tech year.

Short takes 2: Humana’s CEO changeover; Owlet Dream Sock CE Mark, UK approval; TytoCare goes to school; LG enters home health with Primefocus; Samsung $92M buys Sonio (FR); raises by Blackwell in health cybersec, Watershed Health
News roundup: GE Healthcare warns on ultrasound vulnerabilities, Geisinger leverages Best Buy/Geek Squad for RPM, telehealth aids NYC shelter homeless, Fay raises $25M, ClearDATA’s AWS distinction, Validic’s MedTech award
A ‘healthcare prognosis’–from an investor POV (Venrock and ‘smart friends’)
Short takes: Legrand acquires Enovation, FDA nixes Cue Health’s Covid tests, Ascension confirms ransomware attack–who did it? (updated), beware of ‘vishing’ courtesy of ChatGPT
Is Oracle Health’s Big Vision smacking into the wall of Healthcare Reality? Their business says so. (Always be wary of Transformation Promises)
Separation or sale? WBA putting Boots out for bids; Walgreens pharmacists end month-long HQ protest. (End of Pessina’s Big Vision?)

Earnings and endings dominated this week, along with Transcarent’s Series D, $2.2 billion valuation, and ‘not for sale’ sign. Even NeueHealth and Oscar had a good Q1, but Amwell and Steward didn’t. Telehealth flexibilities got an important ‘go’ in the House. Cigna + Oscar called it a day as did many at 98point6. And cyberattacks continued, this time at Ascension and DocGo.

Short takes: Medicare telehealth flexibilities may extend; ‘no interest’ in Transcarent sale; NeueHealth ekes out positive net income; Cigna and Oscar break up; DocGo, Ascension cyberattacked
News roundup: Transcarent raises $126M; 98point6 lays off; Oscar notches first profit; Steward Health’s Ch. 11; Amazon Clinic GM leaves; Amwell’s down but hopeful Q1; Hims founder gets political

Surprises and shockers abounded this week. If Walmart can’t make it in providing basic health services, what hope does a retail model really have? Optum and Walmart exit telehealth, while Teladoc grows–firmly in the red. Change Healthcare’s troubles led to UHG’s CEO grilling on both sides of Congress and humiliation on MFA. MobileHelp PERS up for sale, Owlet’s new partner, fundings, partnerships. And a shrinking Oracle goes to Music City!

News roundup: UHG CEO’s Bad Day at Capitol Hill; Kaiser’s 13.4M data breach; Walgreens’ stock beatup; Cigna writes off VillageMD; Oracle Cerner shrinks 50%; Owlet BabySat gets Wheel; fundings for Midi, Trovo, Alaffia, Klineo (A rough week for some)
Teladoc’s Q1: increased revenue, increased net loss, dealing with slowing growth–as is CVS Health (Teladoc in existential crisis?)
Midweek news roundup: Optum exiting telehealth, laying off; Advocate Health selling MobileHelp; VA notifying 15M veterans re Change PHI breach, Oracle moving to Nashville–maybe? (updated) (A lot of jettisoning)
Walmart Health shutters health centers, Walmart Virtual Care, in sudden move (updated–why?) (If Walmart can’t make it…)

Returning to the Cyberattack That Changed Everything, wondering how much and to whom UnitedHealth paid ransom–now that they’ve finally admitted it. Also returning to those Merger Guidelines and how they may change the face of healthcare M&A. VA and DOD hard at work on their EHRs and systems, Lumeris gains a luminous funding, but Optum staff are seeing pink slips.

Two studies: Telehealth underutilized, underbilled, even during pandemic–and accounted for only modest increases in costs, and quality (Perhaps undercaptured?)
Short takes: VA seeks vendor to support EHR testing; Defense Health seeks ‘digital front door’ vendor; GAO recommendations to Oracle; Nonin partners with Finland’s Medixine; Lumeris gains $100M equity funding 
What the DOJ and FTC Merger Guidelines mean for healthcare M&A–a Epstein Becker Green podcast (Legal department torture)
Breaking: UnitedHealth admits to paying ransomwareistes on Change stolen patient data (updated) (For what and how much?)
Who really has the 4TB of Change Healthcare data 4 sale? And in great timing, Optum lays off a rumored 20K–say wot? (UHG has some ‘splainin’)

Another packed week, with a few baffling events. Leading in bafflement is NeueHealth’s additional $30M from NEA, which now owns 60%. UHG battling on multiple fronts between the Change hacking and the House, Walgreens lays off more to cut costs, VillageMD sued on ad trackers, and Cerebral’s comeuppance costs $7.1M. VA may restart Oracle Cerner implementation, Epic and Particle Health feud. But restoring faith in health tech benefiting a neglected group is TandemStride. 

TandemStride launches platform to assist survivors of traumatic injury; a personal look (A real care gap)
News roundup: Congress hammers absent UHG on Change cyberattack–and more; 10% unhinged at Hinge Health; Steward Health nears insolvency; Two Chairs $72M Series C (UHG’s troubles cover the waterfront)
ISfTeH student contest and award 2024–deadline 26 April! (Move fast!)
Mid-week short takes: UnitedHealth’s $1.2B Q1 loss from Change attack, another Walgreens layoff, Dexcom-MD Revolution partner, Kontakt.io $47.5 raise, GeBBS Healthcare may sell for $1B (Walgreens still downsizing–what’s next)
News roundup: VillageMD sued on Meta Pixel trackers; Cerebral pays $7.1M FTC fine on data sharing, cancellation policy; VA may resume Oracle Cerner implementation during FY2025; Epic-Particle Health dispute on PHI sharing (Cerebral still in trouble)
The New Reality, Bizarro World version: NeueHealth gets $30M loan increase from NEA, now majority owner (Baffling)

This packed week was about righting listing ships. Teladoc’s CEO suddenly departs, Amwell at risk of a NYSE delisting–we look at What Happened and what needs to be done. VillageMD gets new COO to manage the shrinkage. And Change Healthcare data on sale from disgruntled ALPHV affiliate. Digital health funding continues to limp along. Clover looks at another delisting, Walmart Health applies the brakes. And we highlight innovations from Novosound, Biolinq, Eko, Universal Brain. 

Digital health’s Q1 according to Rock Health: the New Reality is a flat spin back to 2019 (Limping, but alive)
VillageMD names new president and COO as it shrinks to 620 locations (Ex Centene, Humana exec comes out of short retirement to clean up)
News roundup: Now Clover Health faces delisting; BlackCat/ALPHV affiliate with 4TB of data puts it up for sale; $58M for Biolinq’s ‘smallest blood glucose biosensor’ (Will UHG pay more ransom?)
Opinion: Further thoughts on Teladoc, Amwell, and the future of telehealth–what happens next? (A hard look at the follies, mistakes, and saving ships)
News roundup: Amwell faces NYSE delisting; Walmart Health slows Health Centers, except Texas; Novosound’s ultrasound patent; Eko’s Low EF AI; Universal Brain; Elizabeth Holmes in ‘Dropout’ + update
Teladoc CEO Jason Gorevic steps down immediately in shock announcement (Now what?)


Have a job to fill? Seeking a position? See jobs listed with our new job search partner Jooble in the right sidebar!


Read Telehealth and Telecare Aware: https://telecareaware.com/  @telecareaware

Follow our pages on LinkedIn and on Facebook

We thank our advertisers and supporters: Legrand, UK Telehealthcare, ATA, The King’s Fund, DHACA, HIMSS, MedStartr, and Parks Associates.

Reach international leaders in health tech by advertising your company or event/conference in TTA–contact Donna for more information on how we help and who we reach. 


Telehealth & Telecare Aware: covering the news on latest developments in telecare, telehealth, telemedicine, and health tech, worldwide–thoughtfully and from the view of fellow professionals

Thanks for asking for update emails. Please tell your colleagues about this news service and, if you have relevant information to share with the rest of the world, please let me know.

Donna Cusano, Editor In Chief
donna.cusano@telecareaware.com

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

News roundup: GE Healthcare warns on ultrasound vulnerabilities, Geisinger leverages Best Buy/Geek Squad for RPM, telehealth aids NYC shelter homeless, Fay raises $25M, ClearDATA’s AWS distinction, Validic’s MedTech award

GE Healthcare warns hospitals and clinics on cybersecurity vulnerabilities in ultrasound devices. On their Product Security Portal, GE Healthcare issued three Coordinated Security Vulnerability Disclosures affecting:

  • a software application implementation called kiosk mode vulnerable to local breakouts
  • the Common Service Desktop (CSD) component vulnerable to command injection and path traversal
  • EchoPAC Software Only (SWO), EchoPAC TurnKey, and ImageVault products, vulnerable to unencrypted communication, unencrypted database and hardcoded, unencrypted credentials

These primarily affect the Vivid line of ultrasound devices. Cybersec firm Nozomi Networks Labs found vulnerabilities in the system that could be exploited to gain administrative privileges and recommended that ultrasound devices 1) not be left unattended and 2) block incoming connections to workstations that have the clinical software installed and are connected to unprotected networks. Healthcare Dive

Geisinger partners on patient monitoring with healthcare devices delivered by Best Buy/Geek Squad. For the past two years, Geisinger Health, now part of Risant Health, has been using Geek Squad to deliver and activate remote patient monitoring (RPM) devices such as blood-pressure cuffs, weight scales, thermometers, and glucose meters for those in active care management. The results of early pilots are: 50% faster time to activation of devices, 19% higher rate of patient adherence to using a wearable device, and an 18% reduction in technical issues reported. The ConnectedCare 365 program is now being used by 14 clinical programs for patients in acute care episodes, those in pre-surgical or post-acute transition, and those receiving low to complex management of their chronic conditions. 27,000 Geisinger patients have used remote technology since 2010, including 3,000 using the Best Buy—formerly Current Health—platform. An interesting but logical linkup of healthcare and retail services. JAMA Network

NYC’s homeless shelter telehealth program. Since 2020, NYC Health + Hospitals Corporation (HHC) and the New York City Department of Social Services (DSS) have worked together to bring HHC’s Virtual ExpressCare to homeless shelters. In the past year (January 2023 to April 2024), over 5,000 shelter residents across all 600+ shelters have used the program. The shelters use telephones, tablets, and computers provided by DSS to connect residents with Virtual ExpressCare physicians. DSS and other agencies share responsibility for all technical needs, including ensuring WiFi access and equipment cleaning. The program is also extended to shelter staff. Of the primarily (70%) black and Latino residents using the service, nearly half were uninsured, with an additional 5 percent were covered through the NYC Care program. mHealth Intelligence

Nutritional health startup Fay raises $25 million.  The Series A round was led by Forerunner Ventures with participation from General Catalyst and 1984. The virtual network of registered dietician nutritionists emerging from stealth is additionally backed by founders at Grow Therapy and Maven Clinic. Fay’s network of nutritionists are available nationwide and work with insurance plans to provide consumers with nutritional plans covering 30 specialties/conditions, such as eating disorders, diabetes, kidney disease, weight management, gut health, general preventative care, and others. Currently, they work with United Healthcare, CVS Aetna, Blue Cross, Anthem, Cigna, Optum, and Humana. The advantage for dieticians is to build their private practice with Fay’s “business in a box”.   Release

On the cybersecurity front, ClearDATA has achieved Amazon Web Services (AWS) Level 1 Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) Competency. This required meeting operational and technical AWS quality standards for managed security services. They are one of only 62 firms to be so designated and the only one in healthcare. ClearDATA is a comprehensive provider of cloud, compliance, and security services and software for providers, payers, biopharma, and healthcare solutions. Release 

Validic was selected as “Best Remote Patient Monitoring Solution” in the 8th annual MedTech Breakthrough Awards program conducted by MedTech Breakthrough. Validic was one of the earliest companies (2010) in the RPM/IoT area with data integrated into EHRs for personalized care at scale. Since 2010, it has served 400,000 enrolled patients and 7,000 referring providers. Release

Thursday roundup: Kaiser-Geisinger won’t close till ’24, Validic buys Trapollo, Veradigm’s ’22 financials delayed again, ORA telehealth’s $10M Series A, ATA adds 3 to board

Some more reveals on the Kaiser Permanente/Risant Health/Geisinger Health deal. Perhaps the most significant one in Kaiser’s quarterly financial statements was that the closing with Geisinger is projected to be sometime in 2024, subject to the usual regulatory approvals. As announced in April, Geisinger will be the founding system of a new non-profit group, Risant Health, that will bring together a targeted five to six non-profit community health systems. Financial disclosures were also made that were centered on the timing of substantial investments and commitments:

  • Kaiser’s financial commitments to Risant will be made in the five years following closing. The $5 billion previously announced is the upper end of the support. Confusingly, Kaiser is also committing to a minimum investment of $400 million over five years inclusive of funds generated by Risant Health. 
  • Risant’s support and investment into Geisinger will end earlier, in 2028, but in that time will make an investment of a minimum of $2 billion to support Geisinger’s hospital, technology, and strategic development. It will be inclusive of funds generated by both Risant and Geisinger.
  • Risant will also make available to Geisinger no less than $100 million” through 2028 to support expansions of Geisinger’s health plan and care delivery services into bordering Pennsylvania communities.
  • Risant will also make available to Geisinger funds for research and education for 10 years after the 2024 closing

Kaiser’s Q1 was far better than its money-losing ($4.5 billion) 2022, with $1.2 billion in net income. Geisinger has not yet reported Q1, but it had a $842 million net loss in 2022.  FierceHealthcare

Digital health/personalized care company Validic is buying Trapollo, a similar connected care company. Both have platforms facilitating chronic care patient management via remote care and EHR integration. The acquisition price and workforce transitions were not disclosed. Trapollo’s former owner, Cox Communications, will become a shareholder in Validic. Trapollo senior VP/general manager Steve Nester will have the same title at Validic. It will remain at the Validic HQ in Durham, NC, with Trapollo’s former distribution center remaining in Sterling, VA. This continues the trend of consolidation of businesses in similar or complementary services. Release

Veradigm, the former Allscripts, 2022 financials continue to be in a tangle. As previously reported [TTA 3 Mar], Veradigm delayed its Q4 and FY 2022 reporting due to a software flaw that affected its revenue reporting going back to 2021. On 22 March, this expanded to their extending their year-end audit and 10-K filing because of “internal control deficiencies related to revenue recognition.” In a recent SEC filing, they stated that they may be able to file their 10-K by 14 June, but cannot guarantee it. The revenue impact may be as high as $40 million and affect their 2021 closing. HIStalk 5/17/23

Singapore’s ORA Telehealth just scored the region’s largest Series A raise–US$10 million. It was co-led by TNB Aura and Antler with participation from Gobi Partners, Kairous Capital, and GMA Ventures for a total funding to date above US$17 million. ORA is unique in that it’s a vertically integrated platform that markets to a young customer base (average age: 38) on three platforms: Modules (676 different formulations of prescription skincare), OVA (women’s health), and andSons (men’s health).

The American Telemedicine Association (ATA) welcomed three additions to its board this week:

  • Marc Adelson, JD, Teladoc Health’s deputy chief legal and global chief compliance officer. Prior to joining Teladoc in 2011, he was  co-founder and executive legal director of the Institute for Patient Safety & Quality in Virtual Care, the first federally qualified patient safety organization (PSO) focused on virtual care.
  • Kavita Patel, MD, MS, a practicing primary care physician at Mary’s Center, a Federally Qualified Health Center in Washington DC and Maryland. She is also a venture partner at New Enterprise Associates, an NBC/CNBC/MSNBC contributor, and was formerly director of policy for the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs and Public Engagement in the Obama administration
  • Sarah Pletcher, MD, MHCDS, system vice president and executive medical director for strategic innovation at Houston Methodist, and responsible for advancing a wide range of virtual and other innovative care models and solutions.

Seeing into 2017: Fitness trackers’ chill, clinical and specialized wearables warm up

[grow_thumb image=”https://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/crystal-ball.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]The first in a series of brief projections for 2017. Fitness wearables aren’t even lukewarm anymore, and it’s visible in consolidation and the nay-saying articles. In late November, Fitbit bought one of the pioneers, Pebble, for a cut price of $40 million (TechCrunch). Fitbit shares are also cut price at below $7.50, whereas the 2015 IPO debuted at $50. Editor Charles’ favorite, Jawbone, is moribund; the springtime rumors of company sale and shutdown of the fitness band line have not been contradicted since [TTA 27 July]. Research/analytics company CB Insights calculated that 2015 wearable computing (a broader category) investment funding fell 63 percent from 2014 to a level comparable to 2012-13, in large part due to the cooling of the fitness segment.

A sure sign that fitness bands have chilled is negative play in the consumer press. ‘My fitness band has made me fat’, spun off the JAMA article [TTA 28 Sep], is now the theme of hilarious ‘dieters gone wild’ articles like this from the New York Post (warning, eye bleach photos!). But The Sun (UK) waves a warning flag that the information could be sold, sent to your employer or insurance company to profile and/or discriminate against you, or cyberhacked. All this can knock a pricey band off the Christmas shopping list. And no, it hasn’t shifted to smartwatches as most insiders predicted, as smartwatch sales have leveled off–as expected–until their functionality and appearance improve to justify their high price.

What’s in our crystal ball? Clinical-quality and specialized wearables will rise from these ashes.

  • Doctors are simply not interested in the current poor quality of data generated by current wearables–‘it’s worthless, Jim!’ ZDNet’s much-discussed article on this subject paradoxically stresses this, then focuses in on the clinical quality data generated by startup VivaLnk’s eSkin for temperature and stress. Clinical quality data is what is required for a health and wellness research partnership like the one recently announced by RTI and Validic.
  • Industry buzz is that Fitbit bought Pebble for its better IP, apps and stable of developers, not its smartwatch hardware, and that IP includes clinical quality measurement.  Other biosensor companies on the rise according to CB Insights are Thync, Thalmic Labs, YBrain and mCube.
  • In specialty wearables, there’s the recent funding success of Owlet, the High Cute Factor baby monitor sock. Lifebeam transfers multiple sensing technology to helmets and hats for richer data.

And if sensor patches develop with speed, in two to three years they may eliminate all of these!

Rock Health announces its Top 50 in digital health (US)

This Editor observes that digital health is at the state of maturity (so to speak) where entities assemble a Top 50 list and host a dinner to pass out awards. Rock Health, Fenwick & West, Goldman Sachs and Square 1 Bank cast a wide net from investment to startups in their just-released list. (Of course there will be a glitzy dinner, soon, at the kickoff of the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference, 9 – 12 January 2017 in San Francisco. Want an invite?)

Of great delight is an award to John Carreyrou of the Wall Street Journal as Reporter of the Year for his investigative work on Theranos. Other highlights are Validic (clinical/wellness data integrator) as Fastest Growing Company, Evolent Health for Best Performing IPO and BSX Technologies‘ LVL hydration monitor as Crowdfunding Hero (having raised $1.1 million when goal was $50,000). Rock Health website

What is increasingly curious to this Editor is that digital health companies, in nearly all cases, aren’t crossing borders and oceans. Every one seems to stick and be unique to its own country of origin, creatures of their own unique petri dish.

Also in other Rock Health news, having evolved a position as a venture fund/business support provider, they have added to their list of prominent partners kidney care and medical group operator DaVita. Rock Health release.

Philips, Validic partner on health data integration

[grow_thumb image=”https://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/image001.jpg” thumb_width=”200″ /]Earlier today, Philips and health data ‘connector’ Validic announced a partnership where Philips’ multi-part HealthSuite digital health platform will expand with Validic’s access to third-party device data. The surprise is how much data Validic now can access: a claimed 223 million people in 47 countries, which was a surprise to this Editor. Philips’ HealthSuite includes Personal Health Programs, the Lifeline PERS line, eCareCoordinator and eCareCompanion eHealth applications. Exactly how Philips will use this access is not disclosed. Philips release

A diagnosis of why digital health startups die–an old (and new) story

[grow_thumb image=”https://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/upside-down-duck.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]For years now, your Editors have championed integration of data and system interoperability–search on these terms and you’ll find a wealth of articles and views. This Editor also included how data is integrated in patient records as the Fifth Big Question (FBQ) in 2012 [TTA 8 Aug 13]. Many digital health companies, not just startups, have failed at the data integration (and security) tasks, whether with EHRs, hubs, billing and practice management systems or with other devices. (Let us not forget that the initial impetus for Continua back in 2007, the US state/regional HIXs and for HL7 now, was to have common data and interchange standards.)

So there’s no real element of surprise here by John Sung Kim’s pleading in TechCrunch re ‘integrating into legacy systems’ and the troubles his own startup DoctorBase encountered in what he tactfully puts ‘political and technical hurdles’ encountered. But then the velvet gloves come off about EHRs and their less-than-scrupulous idea of ‘partnerships’. (more…)

Better’s fast fail, ending health assistance service 30 Oct

[grow_thumb image=”https://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Better.png” thumb_width=”150″ /]Better is sadly not. This two-year old service that provided personal health assistance, including a real, live health assistant, to guide members through health questions, the thickets of insurance claims, finding doctors and specialists, apps and more, announced earlier this week that it was ending operations as of 30 October. While it was announced via their Twitter feed on Tuesday, most of the industry learned of it through Stephanie Baum’s article in MedCityNews today. Better formally debuted only 16 months ago [TTA 23 Apr 14] and at the time this Editor felt that it was a service in the right direction, a kind of ‘concierge medicine for the masses’ needed when individuals have to direct more and more of their own care.

A solid start, as our Readers have seen, does not guarantee success, but this fast fail is still fairly shocking. A concern at the time was the pricing for the full service model at $49/month, which later became the family price (individuals were $19.99/month). CEO/co-founder Geoff Clapp was among the most Grizzled of Health Tech Pioneers; he had been a co-founder of Health Hero/Health Buddy from 1998 to its sale to Bosch Healthcare, a very long pull in telehealth, and he had spent much of his post-Health Hero time generously advising other startups. Yet despite the involvement of blue chip Mayo Clinic as a service provider, its financial backing from their investment arm and socially-oriented VC Social+Capital Partnership, it managed to raise only its initial seed funding of $5 million (CrunchBase).

So what happened? (more…)

Integrating mobile apps between clinicians and patients

Your Editors have noted many well-funded companies working in the wings to link up and find meaning in the hugeness of Big Data generated by a gazillion medical systems and devices (Validic, the recently seen QpidHealth at HealthIMPACT East). However what’s been scarce on the ground are companies that are front-end, point of service, integrating mobile communications between clinicians, then with consumers/patients, then with EHRs, operations and patient portals. We noted ZynxHealth at HealthImpact, interestingly part of media giant Hearst, but they confine their secure messaging to clinicians. Now spanning both worlds is an early-stage company, Practice Unite, out of New Jersey Institute of Technology’s (NJIT–metro NY-ers of a certain age remember it as Newark College of Engineering!) NJ Innovation Institute accelerator. Inspira Health Network, located in southern NJ, is adopting their single clinician/patient platform. In conjunction with Futura Mobility, this will facilitate clinician/patient secure texting, voice communications, patient-directed communications and delivery of EHR data. Practice Unite has previously developed apps for at least ten health systems and home care providers. Their three-minute demo here illustrates a very wide span among clinicians, hospital operations, home care operations and patient engagement. (This Editor will be finding out more on Friday when visiting their offices at the NJIT Enterprise Development Center in Newark.) Release.

Breaking news out of the mHealth Summit

mHealth Summit this year had an abundance of digital health company news announcements, not only from the conference but also timed to coincide with the heightened interest around it. Your Editor looks over the most interesting of them, briefly. Thanks to Ashley Gold of Politico’s Morning eHealth (@ashleygold, daily reports archived here), Stephanie Baum of MedCityNews (@stephlbaum) and Anne Zieger of Healthcare Dive for their coverage and their company in the press room!

Partners HealthCare researches, Validic expands, AliveCor and Omron ally, Happtique sells out, Doctor on Demand is telemental, Orange goes dental, VA Innovation Rocks

  • Partners HealthCare/Center for Connected Health’s cHealth Compass will use panel and other research to help companies, device manufacturers, startups and investors determine what end users–consumer and provider–want out of personal health tech. Focus groups, interviews and usability testing will help to determine product design, evaluation, assess applications and feasibility as well as interim/final product testing. Partners is already organizing in Massachusetts a 2,000-patient database which rewards participants $50 on registration and $110 annually to be in a monthly survey panel. cHealth Compass website, BetaBoston (Boston Globe)
  • Health data connector/aggregator Validic demonstrates the attractiveness of Anything Big Data on with new clients including the Everyday Health consumer/professional website and the adidas Group’s sport and fitness apps. Recently they added WebMD, Pfizer, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC), NexJ Health and MedHost to their client list. The company claims that their ‘ecosystem’–probably the most popular buzzword at this year’s conference–of healthcare companies and tech developers now reaches over 100 million people with devices such as Omron, Alere, Qardio, Telcare, Jawbone and Withings. Release
  • AliveCor accentuates the retail with Omron. AliveCor, which developed the first FDA-cleared ECG for smartphones and gained clearance for an atrial fibrillation algorithm in August, is collaborating with Japanese device manufacturer Omron on developing its retail presence. Omron’s devices are available in major drugstores such as Walgreens, RiteAid and Walmart so certainly AliveCor is due to benefit. AliveCor is also part of a revived QualcommLife (more on this in an upcoming article)  ReleaseMobihealthnews (Your Editor had the pleasure of meeting at last AliveCor’s CMO and founder Dr. Dave Albert.)
  • Happtique sold to SocialWellth. Last year’s floor talk was about Happtique’s first class of certified apps and a security expert’s untimely discovery of major flaws (more…)

digihealth pulse Virtual 2014

19-21 May 2013, Virtual

Can’t make ATA 2014? Possibly the first fully virtual conference in digital health, DHPV 2014 has 25+ speakers and is fully accessible online plus archived (helpful as all times are NY/Eastern). Speakers include Unity Stoakes of StartUp Health, Esther Tyson of HICCup (The Way to Wellville–more here), Bertalan Meskó, MD, PhD: medical futurist, Matthew Holt of Health 2.0, Ryan Beckland of Validic [TTA 27 Jan], Jim Lefevere of Roche digital marketing, and more. Register here: pre-event price is $195.97 which goes up on 10 May to $225.97.  Agenda  Hat tip to Fard Johnmar of the Enspektos digital health consultancy organizing the event.

Digital health attracting small–and very big–investment action (US)

Last week Validic, a data integrator for payers, providers, preventive wellness companies and pharma, received $1.25M in convertible note funding from SJF Ventures. Recently profiled by guest columnist Lois Drapin [TTA 27 Jan], in August 2013 they received $760,000 in seed funding and are bridging with this to their Series A. According to Mobihealthnews, they are building out their team and adding three senior executives in marketing, business development and operations. They are also presently registered as a Class 1 MDDS device with the FDA. Styling as a mobile health conduit for payers, providers and preventive wellness seems to be a persuasive position. Also CrunchBase.

On the other side of the continuum is Castlight Health with a Friday IPO that raised $180 million and eventually created a valuation for the company at a blindingly bright $3 billion. Not bad for a company with but $13 million in 2013 revenues and $100 million in forward customer contracts. Castlight’s tech platform enables employers to manage healthcare costs better and for employees provides better information for making decisions based on quality, pricing and convenience. Here at the top of the market is another attractive position–drive down big enterprise healthcare cost. Mobihealthnews