Propeller Health Raises $14.5 Million Series B For Connected Rescue Inhalers

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Propeller Health announces a $14.5 million Series B funding round led by Safeguard Scientifics, with additional participation from returning investor The Social+Capital Partnership. The new funding follows Propeller’s 2012 Series A round of $5 million, and $7 million in seed funding and convertible notes raised between its 2010 launch and 2012. In total, Propeller Health has raised north of $26.5 million.

Propeller Health is marketing a platform that helps patients with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease track how frequently they turn to their rescue inhalers to alleviate shortness of breath or asthma attacks. As part of their ongoing treatment, these patients are required to maintain a medication journal that lists each time they use their inhaler, and any additional pertinent information. The goal of the journal is to help patients begin to understand what environmental factors are contributing to their asthma attacks.

To help this patient population stay healthy and out of the hospital, Propeller Health has developed a small sensor that clips to the top of a rescue inhaler and passively records the date, time, and location each time the inhaler is used. This information is then wirelessly sent to an iOS app that tracks medication use, replacing the traditional medication journal.

Medication adherence is also a significant issue for the COPD population. Most patients are taking at least one daily medication, but adherence rates are estimated to be somewhere between just 30-50 percent, resulting uncontrolled COPD in 50 percent of patients. To address this problem, Propeller health has created a remote patient monitoring dashboard for providers that aggregates rescue inhaler usage data as it is captured by the sensor. This information is then used to risk stratify the asthma and COPD populations in the community, highlighting the most at risk patients with uncontrolled conditions. With Propeller Health’s tools, these patients can be contacted and educated to address their problems before their condition deteriorates to the point of needing to be hospitalization.

By capturing medication usage data passively from the patient, and reformatting this data to empower providers, Propeller Health is positioning itself as a tool for payers and ACOs to reduce the overall cost of care for the asthma and COPD patient population. The tools are also valuable assets for organizations working to reduce COPD-related readmission rates. Cumulatively, COPD and asthma generate $100 billion in healthcare spending in the US annually. Propeller Health hopes to reduce this burden by helping connect patients and providers to address the disproportionate portion of this population living with poor medication adherence practices and an uncontrolled condition.

The company says that the new funding will be used to accelerate product development, and bolster sales, marketing, and client services divisions.


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