HealthPrize raises second round of funding for medication adherence offering

By Heather Mack
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HealthPrize Technologies closed a series B round of financing, which included new and existing investors. The medication adherence company intends to use the funds to expand the team both internally and internationally. While the amount of this round remains undisclosed, the company had previously raised about $7 million from investors including Mansa Capital, dLife Founder Howard Steinberg and former Advo CEO Robert "Kam" Kamerschen. Earlier this month, the company also announced a partnership with pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim to launch a new online program aimed at improving medication adherence for patients with COPD.

HealthPrize uses a gamification platform to motivate patients to improve medication adherence. Through a combination of education and rewards, such as reminders, financial incentives and the social elements of online gaming, patients improve medication adherence and HealthPrize gets more information patient prescription history. HealthPrize Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer Dr.Katrina Firlik previously told MobiHealthNews that her company differs from the competition in that it offers a variety of prescription verification methods.
 
Mansa Capital veteran investors Robert Dahl and Trygve Mikkelson will both join the HealthPrize Board of Directors as part of the new funding deal. Along with enabling growth of teams and software services, HealthPrize’s latest round will allow the company to expand into new markets – such as the payer market, specifically self-insured employers. The new financing will also promote international expansion, as HealthPrize will continue implementing programs in primary care and specialty conditions across North America, Latin America and Europe.
 
“Our customer portfolio continues to grow, as does our expansion into specialty medications where we believe HealthPrize can add tremendous value to patients, their caregivers and the brands that serve them,” said HealthPrize CEO Thomas Kottler in a statement. “We have some exciting partnerships and new clients announcements that will be made in the near term as well, highlighting our expansion in the US and internationally.”
  
Earlier this month, the company announced its work with Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals to launch RespiPoints, a free online program that educates and rewards people treating their chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). HealthPrize and Boehringer Ingelheim co-designed the RespiPoints program. Patients enrolled in RespiPoints can earn points, which can then be redeemed for e-gift cards, through a variety of activities, such as reporting that they took their daily medication, verifying their monthly refill, reading COPD educational information and completing weekly quizzes and surveys.
 
HealthPrize has previously enjoyed success with such patient engagement programs. In April, HealthPrize released data it collected that demonstrated a 99 percent reduction in “gap days” – days between running out of and then filling a medication – in patients using its program. These figures come from a cohort of 1,085 patients taking a branded cholesterol-lowering medication. Before enrolling in the HealthPrize program, mean gap days were 8.81. Afterward, they dropped to 0.06.

The work with HealthPrize is part of Boehringer Ingelheim’s increased focus on the patient. On stage at the MobiHealthNews 2016 event in San Francisco earlier this month, BI’s director of business innovation Larry Brooks explained how the company’s strategy has shifted.
 
“We take a systems view,” Brooks said. “So instead of looking for opportunities we find interesting, or even starting with an internal business need, recently we’ve really taken a patient — or, I should say, a person — focus. How do people really live their lives with chronic diseases?”