Augmedix raises $16M for Google Glass clinical documentation

By Aditi Pai
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google glassSan Francisco-based Augmedix, which has developed a Google Glass clinical documentation offering for physicians raised $16 million in a round co-led by existing investors Emergence Capital and DCM Ventures. Augmedix has received $23 million in venture funding to date, according to the company.

Other existing investors include Great Oaks Venture Capital, and Rock Health’s LPs (Kleiner Perkins, Mohr Davidow Ventures, and Aberdare).

The company plans to use some of the funding to create new partnership initiatives. Augmedix grew its employee base significantly in 2014 -- from 36 employees in March 2014 to 100 currently -- but plans to use funds to continue to expand its workforce in 2015.

"This new round of funding demonstrates that Google Glass is thriving in the enterprise space, particularly in healthcare," Augmedix CEO Ian Shakil said in a statement. "Demand for and reaction to Augmedix have been extremely strong and positive. We're proud to be making a real difference in patient satisfaction, doctor satisfaction, and health record accuracy. In terms of economic impact, we've repeatedly shown that our service effectively turns three doctors into four." 

Augmedix graduated from Rock Health in 2013 with funding and early data from early doctors beta users. The startup uses Google Glass to reduce the time physicians spend interfacing with EHRs on a computer screen, leading to more face time and eye contact with the patient, according to the company.

The software reduces both data entry and data look-up time. For data entry, Glass records the doctor’s initial consultation with the patient, and a combination of computers and human administrators enter that information into the medical record. When the doctor needs to look something up, they can do so with voice commands to Google Glass. The internet connection is disabled for patient privacy reasons, and all data is sent via an isolated, encrypted channel.

Augmedix's offering is used by five national health systems, including Dignity Health, in 10 states.

At the end of last year, MobiHealthNews pointed out that Google's Glass initiative appeared to be losing steam. Some developers working on Google Glass projects have since changed direction and several Google employees working on the Glass project, including Google Glass lead developer Babak Parviz, have left the company. Additionally, a fund for Google Glass created by Google Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and Andreessen Horowitz, called Glass Collective, has shut down its website.

In response to this trend, Shakil told MobiHealthNews in an email at the time that “Google is very invested in the longterm.”

“As they pour more resources into the Google Glass team, Augmedix and our investors are excited to double down and commit to growth,” Shakil said last year. “Outside of Augmedix, Glass is getting awesome uptake in healthcare and the enterprise in general. Just a couple weeks ago, Google doubled the number of Glass at Work partners. Healthcare is clearly dominating! Consumer will come eventually — but that’s a longterm play.”