Cityblock Health, a startup using a tech platform to address health disparities and provide cost-effective care services, has announced a $160 million Series C round. General Catalyst led the raise, which also included Willington Management and unnamed prior backers.
These investments come just a few months after the startup raised $53.5 million in a Series B+ round. The round brings the company's total equity haul to about $300 million. What's more, the company said that its valuation has exceeded $1 billion.
WHAT IT DOES
Spun out of Alphabet subsidiary Sidewalk Health at the tail end of 2017, Cityblock seeks to provide medical care, behavioral care and social services to Medicaid and lower-income Medicare beneficiaries.
From the back of its proprietary Commons technology platform, the startup connects members to its virtual care teams and other local resources, which range from community providers to short-term housing programs. The company contracts with insurers and takes on a portion of their risk. That process, Cityblock says, creates a value-based financial structure that aligns its goals with improved long-term outcomes for its members' complex cases.
So far, Cityblock is working with payers in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, and Washington, D.C.
WHAT IT'S FOR
Along with meeting the heightened demand for its services throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the company wrote that it will be extending its reach into new regions and building out its offerings. These additions include the launch of a maternity care program, more virtual care tools and an investment into "codifying the standards of care we are developing into technology and data infrastructure."
The call for new health programs focused on the so-called social determinants of health has been at an all-time high throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Unemployment, food insecurity and other issues have increasingly led public and private organizations to reach out to tech-based startups that connect their communities to support services.
Among these platforms connecting community members to local resources are Unite Us, which acquired Staple Health back in June; NowPow, which just announced new collaborations with the Chicago Department of Public Health; and Healthify. At the same time, there are ongoing campaigns among advocacy organizations and political leaders to cut down the "digital divide" and provide greater access to technologies like smartphones that are increasingly becoming key components in virtual care.
ON THE RECORD
"It is even more meaningful to have earned the resources and the mandate to scale our impact on behalf of marginalized and underserved communities during a year that has brought into stark relief some of the harshest consequences of our flawed and inequitable health and social systems," the company wrote in a blog post announcing the raise.
"Doing this work is a privilege and a responsibility that we do not take lightly. Doing our part in the fight for social justice and equity means continuing to demonstrate that it is possible – necessary, even – to align financial incentives around value and outcomes, and redesign the way we deliver healthcare with an orientation towards trust, accountability, and dignity, built with and for those who need it the most.