HealthiestYou raises $30M led by Frontier Capital – interview CEO Jim Prendergast
After going through an entire box of tissues, again, you head to the closest urgent care. The problem is you find out it’s not in-network and will be stuck with a large bill-what now? One Valley telemedicine startup is helping company employees gain access to doctors anytime day or night from the comfort of their home and maneuver through their insurance plans with ease.
HealthiestYou, a telemedicine and consumer user engagement platform that helps provide unlimited 24/7 access to physicians via mobile device, email or phone for common illnesses in a cost-effective way, announced they secured a $30 million growth investment from Charlotte-based Frontier Capital.
In an interview with CEO Jim Prendergast, the raise will be used for doubling staff, by 25-35 people, over the next 90-120 days, expanding to a new office in City North and building out more features for the platform to help make healthcare more affordable, he said.
“Our initiative is ‘Couch Care’. We want to enable the ability [for patients] to sit down from home or work and talk to a doctor, check their deductible and take care of everything from the couch. We believe that smart TVs can be used for more than Netflix.”
To date the company reports over 4,000 employer groups across the U.S. who provide the HealthiestYou service and access to 2,300 doctors including: emergency room doctors, wellness consultants and concierge doctors; at any point in time there are 100 to 320 active doctors online, Prendergast said.
In our last report, the company launched a mobile version and expanded features of their platform that includes area-based procedure cost-comparisons, provider directories, drug pricing comparison, scheduling appointments and an enhanced online wellness program and insurance information and eligibility.
With the cost of healthcare and deductibles on the rise, the company has three main goals to help users reduce their costs and obtain quality healthcare.
“From a high level, we are not a telehealth company, we are a consumer engagement platform that does three things: educate consumers on what is available at their fingertips; We remind and alert through geolocation, if a person walks into an ER, the app will buzz them and tell them they can talk to a doctor right now with a click of the button. Or if they walk into a pharmacy, they can price a drug through the app; [finally] we provide easy access to these things [so patients] don’t have to jump through hoops, just push a button and get care. Also, it syncs with their insurance plan and in-network providers are listed on the app- like UBER, they can easily see providers nearby,” Prendergast said.
The app also shows users local veterinarians in the area, so you and your four-legged friend can get care.
Ultimately, if a patient chooses an in-network provider it lowers the cost for all. “We intercede at these care points to help you make a better choice,” Prendergast said.
The HealthiestYou service is available through insurance brokers and consultants through employer groups. The company will soon be adding video consultations with doctors.
With growth and R&D in the works, Prendergast said that what attracted him to Frontier Capital was the “extensive portfolio of healthcare software cos [their] deep bench of talent and executive level management that we’ll pick from. They have an excellent track record in the healthcare space.”
Andrew Linder, managing partner for Frontier Capital, said in a statement, “Individuals participating in employer-sponsored health plans are increasingly being asked to take greater responsibility for their healthcare decisions. Solutions like HealthiestYou enable these individuals to navigate the health system in a more cost efficient and convenient manner.”
As for building a company in Arizona, “We say it on our site, ‘Made in Scottsdale, Arizona. We always fight the battle of Silicon Valley. We have the passion to build this in Arizona, we can get talent here and build really cool stuff. We want to get Scottsdale recognized as to where innovation is occurring,” Prendergast said.
Information on goals was clarified following original post