Cityblock raises $160m to address healthcare inequities
Cityblock Health, a tech-focused healthcare provider for low income communities in the US, has raised $160 million in its Series C funding round, to grow their footprint and continue to improve access to healthcare and outcomes for marginalised communities.
The investment round brings Cityblock's total equity funding to $300 million. The new funding will be used to support Cityblock’s national expansion, to launch new service lines, and to continue investing in its proprietary technology platform, Commons, among other areas. They also aim to build further integrated home-based and virtual care services, MSO capabilities, analytics and contracting software to enable a consistent care model.
Founded in 2017, Cityblock Health partners with community-based organisations to deliver care to Medicaid and lower-income Medicare beneficiaries. This includes medical care, behavioral health, and social services; delivered virtually, at home, and in community-based clinics.
Their model reflects their philosophy that improving health outcomes and minimising systemic healthcare inequities requires addressing fundamental issues such as poverty, having access to nutritious food, and the ability for someone to safely care for themselves and others.
Technology is at the core of Cityblock's model, with custom-built tools supporting care team operations and patient interactions with clinicians. For instance, patients can speak to care providers via video consultations, and via a mobile app.
The company's care teams include doctors, nurses, advanced practice clinicians, behavioral health specialists, licensed clinical social workers, and community health partners. They also work closely with existing healthcare providers and social services organisations.
Cityblock currently serves 70,000 members in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Washington, DC. The company says that over the past year, Cityblock members have seen reductions in hospital admission rates and improvements in quality outcomes, driving down costs across the board, while more than doubling membership and revenue, year-over-year.
Andy Slavitt, former Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Cityblock Health board member, has been vocal in the media about the impacts of the pandemic. Commenting on the new investment, he said: “The pandemic is making it abundantly clear that we need to address the deep health inequities in this country.
“We need a Cityblock in every community that we have ignored for too long and where the odds stack against people to live a healthy life. This investment takes us one step closer to making that a reality.”
New Cityblock investor General Catalyst led the funding round, with participation from Wellington Management and support from major existing investors, including Kinnevik AB, Maverick Ventures, Thrive Capital, and Redpoint Ventures among others.
Hemant Taneja, Managing Director at General Catalyst, said: “In just a few short years, the Cityblock team has shown that if new care delivery models align with the needs of the communities they serve, there is opportunity to measurably improve healthcare outcomes for the most vulnerable among us.
"By building their solutions on a modern technology stack with an orientation towards impact, we’re confident this team has the potential to scale to serve millions of people across the country in new and better ways.”
On the rise: Doktor.se
1. Doktor.se launches as a digital healthcare platform in Sweden in 2016. The company's focus is on the B2B market, with a mission to help members find, book and get access to healthcare services through telehealth and telephone calls.
2. The company offers healthcare services through its app as well as at bricks and mortar clinics. After raising more than €40 million in a funding round in May 2020 to expand its operations both nationally and overseas, CEO and founder Martin Lindman says there are plans to enter new markets at the beginning of 2021.
3. Belgium becomes the fifth market where Doktor.se provides telemedicine, through Belgium's communications company Proximus Group. It becomes the second most downloaded doctor app in Europe, and over 1.2 million patient consultations are carried out, either through the app or at physical clinics in Sweden. Throughout 2020 it administers over 250,000 COVID-19 antibody tests in Sweden.
4. Doktor.se is the most popular digital healthcare in Sweden, used by approximately one-tenth of the country's population. New funds are raised to offer improved services for mental health and chronic illnesses, and to expand digital services and acquire physical services to integrate into its digital platforms with the aim of creating a hybrid model.
5. The company announces €29.5 million in funding from Chinese technology multinational Tencent Holdings. Doktor.se say the funds will be used to make its global healthcare services more efficient, accessible and affordable.
The platform now employs nurses, doctors and specialist doctors, psychologists, and physiotherapists, and is available across Europe and in Brazil.
6. Over 1.5 million people are currently using healthcare apps developed by Doktor.se, either run by the company or through its SaaS licensing business. There are around 900 people employed by the company, and Doktor.se say that the productivity of medical staff using the platform is up to four times greater than those working in traditional services.