98point6 raises $50mn Series C to reimagine primary care
Digital healthcare company 98point6 has announced that it has officially completed its Series C, raising $50mn. The Merchant Banking Division of Goldman Sachs was an anchor investor in the Series C round, which was further supported by existing investors, bringing the total amount raised to $86.1mn since the company's inception in 2015.
Founded in 2015, 98point6 is pioneering a new approach to primary care. By pairing deep technology with board-certified physicians, the company aims to make primary care more accessible and affordable—leading to better health and reducing the cost of care.
The funding will enable 98point6 to scale and fulfil the strong commercial demand of its text-based primary care service, grow its product and physician teams, expand the capabilities of the platform and continue to build its channels. Now available in 40 states and Washington, D.C. (reaching 92% of the US adult population), the service is slated to be available in all 50 states by early 2019.
Long wait times, rising patient costs and the busy lifestyles are preventing patients of visiting the doctor's office and led to consumer disengagement from a relationship with primary care. 98point6 combines artificial intelligence with board-certified physicians to deliver affordable, high-quality care right to a patient's smartphone.
This technology assists doctors by automating and completing tasks that don't require direct physician interaction, allowing them to focus their time on treating more patients. As a result, 98point6 members have experienced a 97% in-app resolution rate with more than one-third of them receiving care in non-traditional locations such as airports, coffee shops, in-transit or at work.
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"Primary care is the main entry point for individuals into an increasingly complex healthcare system, making it the ideal setting for providing patient education, encouraging preventive care and controlling downstream costs," said Jo Natauri, Global Head of Healthcare Investing for the Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division.
"We are excited to partner with 98point6 because they are dedicated to improving the physician and patient experience—empowering board-certified physicians with technology to enhance care delivery and drive patient engagement."
The latest funding will also allow for expansion into new markets, including health plans, health systems and higher education. To date, 98point6 has contracted with 27 companies nationwide across a range of industries (including retail, technology, financial services, healthcare and manufacturing) and is on track to have 100,000 members under contract through employers by the end of the year. Companies that have launched the 98point6 service to their members include Seattle Children's Hospital, Aegis Living and Zones, Inc.
"We set out to make primary care accessible and affordable for everyone, to address a crisis in America that has led to nearly one-fifth of the population not having a relationship with primary care," added Robbie Cape, CEO and Co-founder of 98point6. "The phenomenal demand we've seen in just a short period of time reaffirms the need for 98point6, and this latest investment will enable us to deliver on our vision, driving deep engagement with our patients and empowering them to take control of their health."
Jvion launches AI-powered map to tackle mental health crisis
Clinical AI company Jvion has launched an interactive map of the US that highlights areas that are most vulnerable to poor mental health.
The Behavioral Health Vulnerability Map uses Jvion's AI CORE™ software to analyse public data on social determinants of health (SDOH) and determine the vulnerability of every US Census block group.
Vulnerability refers to the likelihood that residents will experience issues like self-harm, suicide attempts or overdoses. The map also identifies the most influential social determinants in each region, to show the social and environmental conditions that contribute to mental illness.
As an example, the map shows that Harrison County in Mississippi has a 50% higher suicide rate than the rest of the state. It also shows a high percentage of individuals in the armed forces at a time when active duty suicides are at a six-year high, along with a high prevalence of coronary artery disease, arthritis, and COPD, all chronic illnesses that are linked to a higher suicide risk.
The map also shows Harrison County has a high percentage of Vietnamese Americans, who studies suggest have high rates of depression and may be less likely to seek help from mental health professionals.
The map was built using the same data and analytics that Jvion used to create the COVID Community Vulnerability Map, which was launched towards the start of the pandemic.
With this new map, Jvion is aiming to tackle the growing mental health crisis in the US. “At a time when so many Americans are struggling with their mental health, we’re proud to offer a tool that can help direct treatment resources to the communities that need it most,” said Dr John Showalter, MD, Jvion’s chief product officer, who led the development of the map.
“For too long, the healthcare industry has struggled to address social determinants of health, particularly in the context of behavioural health. Our hope is that by surfacing the social and environmental vulnerabilities of America’s communities, we can better coordinate our response to the underlying conditions that impact the health and wellbeing of people everywhere.”