Today medical communication startup Medici announced that it has raised $22.4 million from executives coming from Citadel, Dell, Publix, and Starwood Capital, and other unnamed investors. The Austin, Texas-based startup is aimed at enabling asynchronous text messaging between care providers and patients.
“Medici is a communication tool for doctors and patients to collaborate on care. The best analogy would be WhatsApp,” Dr. Sandeep Pulim, the chief innovation officer at Medici, told MobiHealthNews. “Medici is very similar, instead of messaging with friends and family you can message with your doctors, nurses, therapist, your veterinarian even. So it allows for remote care collaboration. Everything starts out as an asynchronous message.”
The Texan company was founded in 2016 by CEO Clinton Phillips, who had previously founded 2nd.MD, a platform that helps people all over the world find second opinions. But many clients were asking Phillips about how to connect better with their own care team, leading to the creation of Medici. So far its HIPAA-compliant tool has been downloaded by 2,500 medical providers.
“If you are a mom, you manage your own doctors—you have your OB-GYN and primary care doctors, you have your kids’ pediatricians, you may have your mom and dad's neurologist or gastroenterologist,” Pulim said. “Medici allows you to invite and build that relationship in one place. So in one app you have all the care providers that are helping you and your family.”
Having different medical experts, including a veterinarians, on one platform could help a clients' overall health, Pulim said. For example, he recalled the story of an 80-year old patient who had just had back surgery and was carrying her dog to the vet. That could put the patient at risk of re-injuring her back. But here the veterinarian could flag that she was carrying the dog so her surgeons would know about the risk.
One of the goals of the tool is to prevent patients from relapsing.
“Let’s say I’m hospitalized for COPD. There’s that post hospital discharge 30-day window I could [be at risk] of going back to the hospital,” Dr. Tom Kim, chief evangelist for Medici, told MobiHealthNews. “You can now create sort of post acute teams dedicated to what can we do to get you back on your path to wellness and not bounce back to the hospital. Once you are stabilized, truly you can transfer back to your PCP. Being able to plug and play these care teams is [essential].”
The money from the latest round will be used to help the company scale and potentially have a more global reach. The technology is already being used in the US and South Africa, where Phillips is originally from, but the company is looking to expand to another three to five countries in the future.
“The first groups that started with Medici were smaller practice with one or two doctors who wanted to use it with their patients, then started going up the chain larger practices, health systems hospitals and as you know the higher you get, the more you have to do to be able to support different work flows and regulatory requirements,” Pulim said. “It also helps us scale our technology and add more sales and marketing teams.”
This comes less than two years after the company raised $24.2 million from unnamed investors.
“I’ve been doing telehealth for about 14 years this is the tool I wish I had 14 years ago,” Kim said. “This is what is enabling me to cut through a lot of the nonsense and is an incredibly efficient cost effective way and be able to get to the business of caring for my patients which I think is the ultimate vision of caring for the company.”