Roundup: Recent and notable digital health hires

By Jonah Comstock
12:07 pm
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Brian Garcia Brian Garcia, Welltok's new chief technology and product officer.

Welltok, developer of the CafeWell Health Optimization Platform, brought on Brian Garcia as chief technology and product officer. Garcia comes to Welltok after 15 years at Aetna, where he served as chief technology officer for their Healthagen business unit. His focus at Welltok will be on product and technology strategy, including product management, engineering, platform design and development, as well as architecture.

Valence Health, a Chicago company that provides clinical integration, population health and value-based care services to healthcare providers, announced that the company has a new CEO: R. Andrew Eckert, who has previously served in the CEO role at TriZetto, Eclipsys, CRC Health and ADAC Laboratories. Valence's current CEO, Phil Kamp, is one of the company's cofounders, and he's served in that role for 19 years. Kamp will take on a new role as chief strategy officer. A renewed national interest in value-based care has led to major growth for the company, which saw revenues grow 55 percent in the last year.

Sharecare, the health and wellness engagement company founded by TV's Dr. Mehmet Oz and WebMD founder Jeff Arnold, has hired its first chief commercial officer. Brent Herd comes to Sharecare from the ranks of Twitter, where he served as head of sales for the telecommunications and travel industries. Herd will be in charge of forging partnerships to scale new Sharecare products, including the voice analysis software based on recent aquisition Feingold Technologies' assets.

iRhythm Technologies, makers of the ZIO patch wearable sensor for the detection and treatment of arrhythmias, has hired Marga Ortigas-Wedekind as vice president for global marketing. Ortigas-Wedekind will be in charge of ZIO's global marketing strategy, including working with payers on reimbursement. She comes from similar roles at Omnicell and Guidant corporation.

WebMD CEO David Schlanger announced in the company's latest earnings call that WebMD has hired Ben Slocum as CEO of the company's private portal services business. Slocum has 30 years of healthcare experience that include stints at Vantage Care Cancer Network, Lovelace Healthcare Network, and UnitedHealthcare of California. As befits his extensive payer background, Slocum will work to accelerate growth of WebMD's employer and payroll customer base.

Jiff, a Palo Alto-based enterprise health benefits start-up, hired four new executives on the heels of a $23.5 million funding round. Jonathan Hodge, a hire from IBM, will serve as executive vice president of product. Dr. Eric Flyckt, who led product at recent IBM acquisition target Explorys, will be vice president of informatics. The company's new VP of finance, John Kemmerer, lists Odwalla, Merced Systems, Delphix, and Crittercism on his resume. Finally, Rachel Sherman, who has been serving at Jiff for two years, will become vice president of customer success and operations.

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