Earlier this week digital substance-abuse-recovery platform Ophelia landed $2.7 million in seed funding, according to Forbes reports. The latest round was led by General Catalyst, Refactor Capital and Y Combinator.
WHAT THEY DO
Ophelia focuses on helping folks with an opioid use disorder quit. Patients first are required to go to an in-person visit with a physician in order to get a prescription for a withdrawal medication such as buprenorphine. They can then follow up with caregivers over a video medium through Ophelia.
After this, Ophelia can start its digital services with patients. Customers are able to use the platform to fill their prescriptions, which can be delivered to the home. Ophelia also provides a peer support person, also known as a care coordinator.
According to Forbes, the service is subscription based and costs $195 a month without insurance.
WHAT IT’S FOR
The company did not specify how the new funds would be used. However, in the Forbes report the startup did mention expanding its geographical footprint.
THE LARGER TREND
We’ve seen an uptick of companies looking at addressing the opioid crisis. axialHealthcare, maker of a platform for managing substance use disorder (SUD) patients, closed $15 million in Series C funding round in early March. Just a month before, in February Boulder, another digital health company focused on opioid treatment, scored $10.5 million in Series A funding.
Opioid use is a well-documented problem in the United States. The CDC reports that, in 2018 alone, opioid related overdoses killed 47,000 people. Within the last decade the problem has grown exponentially. According to the CDC, opioid related deaths have increased almost six times since 1999.