Forward Health, a UK-based app maker aiming to improve messaging and communications between healthcare practitioners (and not to be confused with AI care-focused Forward) has raised $3.9 million in seed funding, according to a report from TechCrunch. The round was led by Stride.VC, with additional support from Albion Capital and individual angel investors.
Forward Health’s GDPR-compliant app allows care teams and clinicians to not only send each other quick smartphone-to-smartphone messages, but also securely share patient profiles or photos.
The free-to-download app allows users to create, update and share patient or task lists. Further, Forward Health enables connections across NHS hospitals via a search function that filters by staff role, specialty, on call status, and more.
Forward Health was funded in 2016 and enjoyed a preseed funding round of $1.3 million, according to Crunchbase, bringing the startup’s total backing to $5.2 million.
Why it matters
The healthcare industry is notorious for its reliance on outdated pagers, fax, and communications in its pursuit of security. Convenient and secure messaging technologies such as Forward Health’s app have an opportunity to connect fragmented systems and improve the speed of care delivery, especially across multiple care sites.
What’s the trend
While Forward Health mobilizes in the UK, other technology vendors including Doc Halo, DocsInk, Imprivata, LuxSci, OhMD, pMDsoft and TigerText have all begun offering their own kind of HIPAA-compliant text message technology, and many such services have been playing a key role in stemming the US’ ongoing opioid epidemic. Other services, such as Series A round startup Klara, are also tackling the healthcare messaging challenge with platforms that allow providers to better communicate to patients and better share lab results and other pertinent medical information between care teams.