Glooko's new CEO and more digital health hires

By Dave Muoio
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Digital diabetes management company Glooko announced today that Russ Johannesson will succeed Rick Altinger as the company’s new CEO. Johannesson previously served as COO of Sharecare, and as chief client officer of OptumHealth. Altinger will stay on as Glooko’s EVP of corporate development.

“Digital health solutions have a proven impact for people with chronic diseases like diabetes, and Glooko is driving real results among the patients and providers who use it,” Johannesson said in a statement. “I am thrilled to be a part of a company with such a strong team, mission, and product.”

Neurotechnology and brain health analytics company SyncThink has selected Silicon Valley vet Laura Yecies as its new CEO, replacing Ernie Santin. SyncThink recently closed a $3.5 million funding round, saw its technology adopted by the Golden State Warriors and a handful of universities, and was granted new US patents.

“SyncThink is at the forefront of one of the most important health issues we are facing — protecting and optimizing our brain health — our fundamental intellectual and emotional identities,” Yecies said in a statement “I am thrilled to be joining the SyncThink team to help bring our innovative technology to a broader audience.”

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Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar has appointed former Landmark Health CEO Adam Boehler as director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation and as deputy administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Boehler is founder and CEO of Landmark Health, a company that provides home-based medical care. He previously served in executive level roles at aLabs, Accretive LLC, and MedeFinance. 

"Adam is widely regarded as an innovative leader in the private sector and in him we are lucky to have someone who has designed and implemented new, patient-focused approaches to healthcare delivery," CMS Administrator Seema Verma told staff in an email announcing the appointment.

Randy Forman has joined chronic and behavioral health company Vida Health as its new CCO. Forman comes from Livongo Health, where he worked with large employers, consultants, providers, pharmacy benefits managers, and health plans as Livongo’s head of strategic accounts.

“Randy is an exciting hire to add to the mix — he brings strong relationships with employers and providers across the country, and an intimate knowledge of the complexities of today’s healthcare system,” Stephanie Tilenius, CEO of Vida Health, said in a statement. “With Randy’s leadership, Vida will continue our mission to make digital therapeutics ubiquitous.”

Excel Medical has hired Dr. Mark Koppel as the patient surveillance company’s first chief medical officer.

“Bringing on Dr. Koppel as CMO reflects the maturation of our company,” Lance Burton, president of Excel Medical, said in a statement. “It recognizes the need for us to have a clinical voice to help us advance how medicine is practiced with the promise of predictive analytics, in the face of a healthcare environment filled with institutional and regulatory hurdles.”

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Next-generation phenotyping and genetics company FDNA has announced Dr. Karen Gripp as the company’s new chief medical officer, and Dr. Peter Krawitz as its chief data science officer. Gripp is currently the chief of the division of medical genetics at the Al duPont Hospital for Children and a professor of pediatrics at Thomas Jefferson University. Krawitz holds a position as the director of the Institute for Genomic Statistics and Bioinformatics at the University of Bonn in Germany.

“We are thrilled to welcome two highly experienced and knowledgeable professionals within the fields of clinical and molecular genetics,” Dekel Gelbman, CEO of FDNA, said in a statement. “We look forward to building a new standard of care and enabling precision medicine on a global level.”

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Robert Friesen has joined the advisory board of the AI-based preventive health startup healthio. Friesen is currently the CEO of PerformInsight, and has more than 30 years of experience in consulting and management.

“We are delighted to have Robert’s expertise in behavior-based management principles and hope to incorporate those principles in healthio product design,” Sigvard Bore, healthio cofounder and chief product officer, said in a statement.