SEATTLE, June 14, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Xealth, a digital health care startup, today announced an $8.5M investment led by DFJ and the launch of its digital prescribing and analytics platform. The Xealth platform, which is being used by two of the largest health care systems in the US—Seattle-based Providence and Pittsburgh-based UPMC— enables physicians and clinicians to prescribe customized digital health care content, apps, and services as easily as they do medications today.
The emergence of digital health technologies has given rise to more empowered patients and a renewed focus on their health care experience. More than 90 percent of patients say they would use physician-prescribed apps and services to help manage their chronic condition. However, tools that allow clinicians to recommend digital solutions have not kept pace with patients' desire to use them. Moreover, clinicians have little visibility into a patient's engagement with and adherence to these prescribed solutions.
With Xealth, clinicians can prescribe and track the use of educational health content, apps for disease management, and devices to help monitor care, all from their electronic medical record (EMR) charting interface. Xealth aggregates and filters a variety of content sources in a care provider's existing EMR workflow within Epic, simplifying the ability to create a customized experience for the patient. Clinicians can discuss these digital health tools with their patients during appointments, track usage afterward, and schedule reminders to ensure patients use them. Patients can access these digital health prescriptions from their current health system's secure patient portal online, such as Epic's MyChart.
The technology was launched at Providence to support two initial use cases. In primary care, physicians can prescribe educational video content from ACP Decisions to engage patients in the discussion around advance care planning. In women's health, Xealth works with Circle, another digital service developed by Providence to provide personalized physician-led support for moms from pregnancy to pediatrics.
"Xealth will dramatically improve the connection between patients and clinicians," said Rod Hochman, M.D., president and CEO, Providence St. Joseph Health. "Xealth extends the patient and physician relationship outside the walls of a traditional care setting by making it easy for clinicians to prescribe digital content, services, and apps for their patients."
"Xealth represents how technology can help patients and physicians work together toward better health," said Tal Heppenstall, President of UPMC Enterprises, the innovation and commercialization arm of UPMC. "Xealth can accelerate the development and adoption of health care solutions throughout our more than 25 hospitals and 500-plus outpatient sites in a scalable, consistent manner, while helping our physicians engage patients more effectively."
Xealth was incubated within Providence's Digital Innovation Group and is the first technology spinout from the program. Mike McSherry, co-founder of Swype, a predictive text technology sold to Nuance in 2011, and several Swype team members joined Providence last year as executives-in-residence to find new innovations in health care. McSherry and team founded Xealth as a result.
"Providence and UPMC are our ideal launch partners, given their size and focus on the next generation of health care," said McSherry. "Together, we'll be able to better measure the impact of more engaged patients on their health outcomes, and the effectiveness of prescribed content, apps, and services. We're inspired by the possibility of this platform and its potential to become an industry-wide solution."
Providence, UPMC, Hennepin Healthcare System, Froedtert Health and other health systems anticipate expanding the use of the Xealth platform to more easily integrate, prescribe, and monitor a variety of third-party digital solutions. These applications span patient education (articles and video), apps (oncology care, diabetes prevention), and connected medical devices (CPAP machines). As provider systems continue to move more to preventative services, continuous care, remote monitoring and timely interventions, the Xealth platform will help teams provide better patient care.
Xealth was founded in 2016 by serial entrepreneurs who have successfully created and sold multiple companies - most recently Swype, a mobile keyboard deployed on billions of phones. Incubated at Providence Health & Services through its Digital Innovation Group, the Xealth platform enables clinicians to prescribe and monitor digital health care content, apps, and services as easily as they do medications or orders today. Xealth can onboard new digital care vendors in a fraction of the time, integrate the patient experience into a health system portal, and determine the efficacy and engagement of digital care solutions across patient populations.
Emily Melton, Partner, DFJ|
"Xealth represents a critical frontier for health care innovation. There has been over $10B in venture capital invested in digital health solutions in recent years. Xealth helps to quickly accelerate the deployment of those solutions into health systems, allowing physicians to help scale care teams and engage patients more effectively. We're excited that UPMC and Providence share our digital health vision in partnering with Xealth."
Aaron Martin, Chief Digital Officer with Providence St. Joseph Health
"We need to extend care beyond the doctor's office. Patients need accessible information and relevant apps and services for managing their conditions. Doctors need to recommend these digital programs, with the ability to monitor patient engagement and effectiveness of these services. The Xealth platform and their integration with Epic allow us to easily provide both."
Chip Truwit MD, Chief Innovation Officer at Hennepin's Upstream Health Innovations
"With Xealth, we will finally be able to safely and easily integrate third-party solutions to address the needs of our 52 percent Medicaid population."
Mike Anderes, Chief Innovation and Digital Officer, Froedtert Health
"Digital health tools are a key ingredient in transforming how health care is delivered. Identifying who may benefit from these tools and seamlessly integrating these technologies into the care team's workflow is at the heart of what Xealth offers. In partnership with Xealth we will significantly advance our efforts to help people attain and sustain optimal health."