How 1upHealth is attacking one of the biggest challenges in healthcare

And why we co-led their seed round

By Hadley Harris, Founding General Partner, Eniac Ventures

One of the areas we’re most excited about right now at Eniac is how the combination of data and AI will impact healthcare. Despite the inertia caused by structural aspects of the U.S. healthcare system, there are strong signs that we will see a seismic shift in how humans are cared for over the next 10 years. With 17.9% of the GDP spent on U.S. healthcare, this impending change will create unparalleled opportunities for innovative companies to emerge.

Today, we are excited to announce that we’ve co-led 1upHealth’s $2.38M Seed round of funding, along with our friends at Meridian Street Capital and Social Leverage. We believe 1upHealth has the potential to be a fundamental player in the digital healthcare evolution.

The Problem

1upHealth is attacking one of the biggest challenges in healthcare — that patient data remains siloed into distinct Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems across hundreds of hospitals and thousands of locations. Even systems that use the same EHR provider like Epic, Cerner or Meditech are almost never connected. To date, there has been a lot of money invested in trying to solve the problem of making patient data more accessible, but a combination of archaic architecture and misaligned incentives has made it very difficult. Until now.

The solution

Ricky Sahu and team have built a platform that allows developers to access patient information without having to deal with integrating directly with each hospital system’s EHR. If you’re familiar with the way Plaid works with banks, you can think of 1upHealth as a Plaid for patient data. They’ve done the hard work of integrating with over 280 health systems and over 1,000 locations so app developers can focus on building an amazing user experience. Before 1upHealth, integrating with each system would take months.

Right place, right time

The ability for 1upHealth to create the system described above is made possible by four recent developments.

  1. First, is a regulation called Meaningful Use 3. MU3 enacts financial incentives to hospital systems to make patient data available to patients who request it. Since 1upHealth is requesting data on behalf of the patient, their system helps providers adhere to this regulation.
  2. The second trend is the adoption of FHIR, a data format standard for electronic health records. This allows patient data to be transferred from disparate systems in a standardized format.
  3. The third trend is the increased patient interest in being an active participant in their health and wellness often referred to as the “consumerization of healthcare.”
  4. Finally, as healthcare moves from fee for service to fee for value, hospital systems are now incentivized to account for costs which can be better controlled using external data from patients.

Team

Like all investments, we make the #1 factor is the team. The 1upHealth team brings a strong mix of experience from Google, a number of healthcare startups and Boston Children’s Hospital. Even more impressive was what they were able to achieve in a short time with very little funding. Before raising any venture money, they were already integrated with 280 healthcare systems and had a couple hundred developers using the platform — numbers other well-funded platforms can’t boast. As seed investors, we’re often judging a team’s ability to execute on past situations, so it makes our job much easier when we meet a company that has already executed at a high level with very limited resources.

We’re very excited to be working with Ricky and team but even more excited to see the kinds of life-changing products that will be built on their platform.

Read more in MobiHealthNews.


consumer view of 1upHealth’s dashboard
1upHealth team at HIMMS 2019