Weekly Recap 8/30/13

8-26-2013 10-35-50 PM

Health services company Cigna is partnering with HopeLab to globally launch the digital health firm’s gamified mhealth app designed to help pediatric patients combating cancer. Re-Mission 2 puts players inside the body, where they attack cancer cells using weapons like chemotherapy, antibiotics, and the body’s immune system. The games have been tied to a boost in positive emotions, positive shifts in attitudes about chemotherapy, and increases in self-efficacy (a patient’s belief in their ability to fight the cancer). The game encourages patients and leads to better treatment adherence.

1-24-2013 9-27-49 PM

Washington DC-based startup Audax Health raises a $20 million Series B round for its wellness platform, Zensey. The round attracted some major names in the health and tech industries, including Jack Rowe, former CEO and chairman of Aetna; Dan Rose, VP of partnerships at Facebook; and Navigy Holdings, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Cigna, Cardinal Health, and New Leaf Ventures are also invested in Audax Health from earlier rounds. The latest round brings Audax’s total investment to $55 million.

8-27-2013 9-43-44 PM

Menlo Park, Calif.-based GuideSpark raises a $5 million first round led by Storm Ventures, with additional funds contributed by IDG Ventures. The company has developed a YouTube inspired benefits manager platform designed to educate employees on important health benefits within the context of a three-minute online video.

8-28-2013 9-52-48 PM

Stealth digital health startup Sproutling raises a $2.6 million Series a round, led by Rob Hayes of First Round Capital. Sproutling is developing an ankle-worn baby monitor and activity tracker mash-up that continuously monitors vitals and sleep patterns and sends alerts to a parents smartphone app.

8-26-2013 9-51-48 PM

Dallas, TX-based accelerator Health Wildcatters introduces its first class of health IT startups.  The startups begin a 12-week accelerator program today. They will receive $30,000 in seed money with an additional $250,000 available in follow on funding, plus mentorship and additional services. Health Wildcatters takes an eight percent equity position in exchange. The following companies comprise the class:

  • Care Starter makes an app that gives patients access to information and resources to help them manage their life with a chronic medical condition.
  • Cariloop hosts a digital platform to access real time information about geriatric care and service providers.
  • Fraud ID Standard Technology is a patent pending system of preventing healthcare fraud through a real-time database system.
  • KinesioKinect enables the mainstream use of mobile technologies and motion sensors to lower healthcare costs while improving patient outcomes.
  • MakeMyPlate is a smart engine that guides the decision making process for daily food intake by making the process visual, fun, and easy.
  • MyCounsel delivers mental healthcare providers and consumers greater access to data-based care, while improving many broader societal issues.
  • NeuroTek develops a non-invasive, electronic neuro-modulation devices for the treatment of migraines and other diseases.
  • PT PAL is developing an app that stores, schedules and tracks personal physical therapy exercises in a way that is intuitive and convenient while also tracking compliance.
  • Remind Technologies develops patient-centric medication adherence technologies that allow patients to be in charge of their own health.
  • Socrates Health Solutions has invented a non-invasive blood glucose monitoring system.
  • SPAtaneity is a professional nail salon experience for those living with diabetes, cancer, and other immune-suppressed conditions.

8-27-2013 10-54-47 PM

Seattle, WA-based EveryMove introduces the EveryMove 100 Health Insurance Index, a list of regional and national insurance companies ranked based on patient engagement and outreach efforts. The list comes as the nation draws nearer to the October 1 deadline for states to go live with commercial health insurance exchanges.

8-25-2013 6-42-23 PM

The Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse, an investment firm focusing on seed round funding for life sciences startups, announces that it will increase investments in the digital health market, which it perceives as a an easier segment to invest in within the life sciences industry.

8-29-2013 8-59-16 PM

ONC announces the Behavioral Health Patient Empowerment challenge, which is seeking entries from existing behavioral health apps that help patients manage mental health and substance abuse.

New York City is piloting NYC Macroscope, which aggregates EHR data into a public health surveillance database that will allow city officials to monitor the health of the population in near real time.

Travis discusses digital health entry points for startups, concluding that the place to be is in the white spaces, where existing offerings do not deliver what the consumer needs, or where there are no current offerings. He suggests focusing on consumer-oriented offerings, rather than building enterprise solutions. Kyle uses SnapChat as a metaphor to describe his vision for a more secure and more effective digital communication system.

Happy Labor Day! Hope everyone’s got plans to squeeze the last ounce of summer out of this weekend. For me, its camping Friday night, then off to the in-laws for a day by the pool Saturday. Sunday I’m going to finally fix my mother’s snow blower, a chore I’ve been putting off since March. If you haven’t already, head over to Twitter and follow us for daily stories from around the web. If Twitter’s not your flavor, consider signing up for HIStalk Connect update alerts instead. You’ll get an email with our daily content, and nothing more. Thanks for reading! – Lt. Dan

Sponsor Updates

  • Vocera announces enhancements to its secure messaging platform that include on-call scheduling, new smartphone clients, an improved Web console, and server enhancements.
  • Palmetto Health (SC) selects 3M’s 360 Encompass System to integrate and automate medical records coding, clinical documentation improvement, and performance monitoring across its four acute-care hospitals.
  • Imprivata launches an API for its OneSign single sign-on product. The new API allows developers in the healthcare industry to deliver electronic health records in a virtual desktop environment.
  • Truven Health Analytics releases of the latest version of its Micromedex iPhone app.


Lt. Dan, Dr. Travis, Mr. H, Inga, Dr. Jayne.

More news: HIStalk, HIStalk Practice.

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