The news recently came out that Hello Health has raised $10 million in funding. For those that aren’t familiar with Hello Health, here’s a pretty good description of what they do from the press release:
For years, physicians have experienced revenue reductions and, more recently, declining patient visits and must now look to ‘market their practices’ beyond quality of care to include: secure online communications that improve information and care team access, and provide greater convenience for patients. Hello Health is a Patient Management Platform that allows independent primary care physicians to transition from paper to electronic medical records and to provide a patient health portal through a subscription-based plan. Patients pay a small fee for the ability to schedule appointments, request lab results, renew prescriptions, share medical information and communicate (via HIPAA-compliant email, instant messaging and video consults) with their doctors and medical health professionals. The Hello Health Patient Management Platform was developed to provide an improved revenue stream for physicians while also enhancing patient engagement and providing better time and workflow management, all of which combine to strengthen the independence and sustainability of a practice.
I think it was a really interesting move for Hello Health to put a full blown EHR on top of their previous product offering. If you’re going to connect doctors with patients, then you really need to tap into the doctors EHR software. What better way to tap into that software than to just give the doctor the EHR software for free.
I also find it interesting that BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners is part of the funding round. While this is the venture arm of BlueCross BlueShield, it’s still interesting to see a health plan get so close to EHR software. There are plenty of health plans getting connected to HIEs, but not as many to EHR software.
I think the model of healthcare that Hello Health is working on is quite interesting and could represent a larger trend in healthcare: technology facilitating lower cost healthcare. I’ll be writing more on this in the future.