Blueprint Health Winter 2013 Demo Day

Blueprint Health had its demo day earlier this week. Lt. Dan covered this class back in January and I wasn’t at Demo Day in New York this week, so hopefully this post isn’t repetitive. I did go to a different demo day (not health focused) last night so I am in the right mindset at least.

I really like Blueprint for a few reasons. First, it seems focused on helping companies accomplish two things – raise money and get pilots / customers. Money is great, but I think customers and pilots — which to me serve as validation — are much more valuable. With pilots and customers come an easier route to financing.

Second, Blueprint has a health-tech focused co-working space in NYC. The space is now used by 25 health startups. I love co-working space in general, but really love this concept of bringing together health-focused startups in one place. Are there other health-tech co-working spaces? I know  healthfinch and Moxe Health, along with a few other local startups, are looking to create a space in Madison, WI.

Below are my impressions of the 11 "graduating" startups in Blueprint’s most recent class.

DocASAP. Being a service that helps consumers book appointments with doctors, you can’t help but compare it to ZocDoc. What I respect about DocASAP is that is launched right in ZocDoc’s backyard of New York. Differentiating from ZocDoc are: (a) it is focusing a lot of marketing energy on trying to help docs boost online profiles; (b) it is partnering with payers; and (c) it is partnering with companies like Vitals.com so it won’t be competing on search engine optimization (SEO). This last point is important because ZocDoc is putting a ton of resources into being very high on Google search results. Vitals.com, Health Grades, and a few others are already high on Google search results, so partnering with them seems like a great way to boost consumer bookings, which in turn will help sell practices for DocASAP.

Evoncea. Evoncea provides data and analytics to health delivery organizations so they can better market more profitable services to patients. It seems a little like Network Insights (I heard its CEO speak last night) in that it analyzes data — presumably consumer-generated data on the web (Twitter, etc) — and then helps organizations understand what people are looking for and how they are looking for it. If you know that, it’s easier to tailor marketing. It would be really cool if a startup was using public data to proactively engage patients around care and not profitable services, but you really need a business case for that, and that’s a harder sell than marketing profitable services.

For[MD]. It’s a different take on doctors’ networks, though there are comparisons that could be made to Doximity. The unique angle is they are marketing to medical associations, presumably to replace Listservs and more actively engage members. The service is free to medical associations. The company makes money by charging hospitals to use the platform to find and recruit new physicians. It makes a lot of sense, but the biggest risk is probably when docs learn the association is essentially selling their profiles, through for[MD}, to recruiters. Maybe the associations already do this and docs don’t know or don’t care.

HealthyOut. This company is still in stealth mode, but from what I can gather on the website, it has a mobile app that makes it easy for users to find healthy dishes at local restaurants. It provides filters like heart health and gluten free. I see this working with the same people that buy Fitbits and FuelBands, meaning the people that are already concerned about their health.

iMedicare. Nice name. The company works with pharmacies to help seniors choose a Medicare Part D plan. From my parents’ experience and what I’ve read, the process of wading through plan info and making a choice is a nightmare. I thought others were doing this as well, but the angle of working through pharmacies may be the differentiator for them.

IntelligentM. The company makes a wrist-worn device that detects handwashing by motion. It’s funny how much the hand hygiene space is heating up; I guess the word is out that hospital acquired infections are on the radar for hospitals. I’m not sure what else to say about IntelligentM. The concept seems like a good one, and I actually see clinicians as more willing (I still don’t think they’ll like wearing something to track their compliance) to wear a band than a waist-worn hand washer like the one from SwipeSense.

Keona Health. The platform is meant to move nurse calls to online forms, saving nurse time by allowing them to respond using a few clicks. The saved time by nurses can then be used for other billable tasks, making offices more efficient. Seems like a good idea and it already has six paying clients.

Luminate Health. This platform helps clinical labs engage and educate patients. By doing so, the logic is that labs are differentiated and form stronger ties to both docs and patients. I really don’t know much about this area at all. Can you drive additional lab orders from docs with something like this?

Nurep. Nurep is a virtual medical device support platform for device companies. By providing virtual access, sales and support reps can be in more places at one time, increasing the number of physicians and locations they can support. The device market is big and growing with new devices in development or testing all the time. In related news is the recent lawsuit against the makers of the Da Vinci robot. Pretty scary stuff. Remember to ask how many procedures your doctor has done when it comes to these new devices. The process of credentialing and determining competency with these new devices and technologies has to be improved.

PadInMotion. The idea is simple — give patients a tablet they can use for entertainment as well as targeted education, subjective monitoring, and feedback. I debated this concept with friends about three years ago and still think it’s a great idea. I even predicted it in my "Prediction for 2012" post. I’m happy the company is having success with 10 customers already.

Touch Surgery. Touch is creating mobile apps to help educate physicians with virtual surgery simulations. I imagine this would be very agreeable to medical device companies, and Touch has started working with a larger device company already. It does seem like a good way to stay up to date, and maybe tracking surgeon performance on the simulator patients could be one data point to assess competency with new devices and techniques.

Travis Good is an MD/MBA involved with health IT startups. More about me.

  • Great idea to match startups with pilots! It mitigates risk for the investor and allows the entrepreneur to make adjustments earlier. #leanstartup

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