CirrusMD, a Denver-based chat-first telemedicine company, has raised $15 million in Series B funding bringing the company’s total funding to $26 million. Drive Capital and the Colorado Impact Fund led the round with additional participation from existing investors.
In addition to the funding, the company announced a new partnership with the VA, via its subcontractor Iron Bow.
WHAT THEY DO
CirrusMD is part of a smaller group of telemedicine companies that believe chat, not video, is the most efficient and effective vector for telemedicine.
“CirrusMD is leading the market in delivering instant, secure texting with board-certified physicians across all 50 states,” Andrew Altorfer, CEO and cofounder of CirrusMD, said in a statement. “We’re turning the antiquated, brick-and-mortar approach to care on its head. By optimizing member engagement and providing care where and when it’s needed, we can reduce out of control healthcare costs and deliver better patient care.”
Through the VA partnership, CirrusMD will be offering more than 200,000 veterans access to their own VA care team in 60 seconds or less via a mobile or web app, according to the company.
WHAT IT’S FOR
The company hasn’t been exceptionally specific about plans for the funding, saying only that it will support their next phase of growth as well as product innovations and existing and new partnerships.
“Real-time communication between a doctor and patient not only improves outcomes but is expected in healthcare today,” Altorfer said. “This latest round of funding enables us to bring seamless, chat-based virtual care to more people.”
CirrusMD isn’t alone in its pursuit of asynchronous telemedicine. In fact, the idea seems to be gaining traction.
One of the most vocal advocates for that modality, Sherpaa Health, was recently acquired by employee clinic company Crossover Health. And at least one mainstream telemedicine company, MDLive, recently launched its own chat-first offering, MDLive Go.
Even Kaiser Permanente is getting in on the trend. At HIMSS18 two years ago, Dr. Ari Melmed told MobiHealthNews how his hospital was benefiting from a chat-first approach.
“I think chat is really under the radar,” he said at the time. “Everyone is focused on video, video, video. There’s a rampant conflation of telehealth with video visits and the two should not be thought of as synonymous. There’s a whole other way of communicating and this is it.”
On the other hand, one chat-based telemedicine company, Medici, recently acquired Chiron Health in order to expand into the world of video.
ON THE RECORD
“Today’s healthcare landscape is not only inefficient; it’s impersonal. CirrusMD is fixing that by changing the way people interact and communicate with healthcare providers,” Molly McCartin, partner at Drive Capital, said in a statement. “The company has proven its ability to engage some of the largest players in the market including 4 of the 8 largest health insurers in the country, deliver a 4:1 program ROI, and successfully resolve up to 84% of all encounters on-platform. CirrusMD enables real change against traditional models of care.”