Over the past 20+ years, we’ve worked hard to make sure Pritzker Group Venture Capital (“PGVC”) is able to support entrepreneurs with the capital they need, when they need it. Though our core focus as a fund is on making initial investments in the $4-8M range (and investing $10-20M over the company’s life), one of the unique aspects of the PGVC platform is our ability to deploy large checks ($50M+) into scaling businesses. These larger investments allow our portfolio companies to “go long” without having to worry about short-term liquidity needs. For PGVC, it allows us to “double down” on great teams who are building companies that are solving real problems, in huge markets, with the potential to create multi-billion dollar businesses (see our investment in SMS Assist). With that as context, we’re excited to announce our latest outsized investment, in Outcome Health.
Why Outcome Health?
With all the late-stage investment activity out there these days, why did we focus on Outcome Health? It really came down to three things:
1. Rishi, Shradha and the Team
2. Proven Improvement in Health Outcomes
3. The Future Digital Patient Experience
I remember meeting Rishi Shah, founder and CEO of Outcome Health, way back in 2008 at a Northwestern University angel investor event. It was clear back then, even as an early-20-something, Rishi had an uncommon, holistic perspective on life and a passion for solving healthcare problems. Throughout the years, our entire organization has gotten to know Rishi Shah and his cofounder Shradha Agarwal. Rishi has been an advisor to our firm for several years, and our like-minded interest in supporting Chicago healthcare entrepreneurs has led us to co-sponsor the Tales from the Trenches interview series at MATTER, a community for healthcare innovators based here in Chicago. Rishi and Shradha share our perspective on “giving back”, and the Outcome Health team has already made a huge positive impact on our healthcare and entrepreneurial communities, especially here in Chicago.
Together, Rishi and Shradha are well on the path of executing on their vision of a future where doctor’s appointments are more helpful, more educational, and lead to better outcomes. In order to help them get there, they have assembled a world class group of folks with impressive backgrounds and a shared passion for making healthcare more effective and driving better outcomes. As for better outcomes…every healthcare company we meet with talks about driving better outcomes, how does Outcome Health deliver in this respect?
Improving Health Outcomes
Outcome Health operates at a unique intersection of patients, clinicians, payers, and drug/device manufacturers. With its scale today, Outcome Health impacts over 500 million patient visits every year (that’s more than 5,000 patients in the 5 minutes you’ll spend reading this blog post). Sitting in the middle of such a complex world allows Outcome Health to collect, unite, and action massive amounts of data. It is Outcome Health’s mission, and our belief, that all of this data can be used to improve the health and lives of patients, and they are already doing so, for millions of patients. Physicians report increased compliance from patients who interacted with Outcome Health screens at the point of care. Educational videos about procedures enable physicians to have higher quality conversations with patients. Simply interact with one of Outcome Health’s digital wallboards and you are transported to the future of healthcare where the doctor’s office is less scary and confusing, but instead, helpful and educational.
Clinical innovations and improved drugs/devices will only get us so far. We at PGVC believe that healthcare must revolve around the patient in order to be successful. Taking advantage of downtime in a waiting room to educate a patient on his/her medical condition or utilizing interactive 3D models in the exam room can greatly empower a patient to take better care of themselves, which is the best way to lower costs and drive better outcomes.
The Future Digital Patient Experience
Looking to the future, we think much of healthcare innovation will be driven by companies focused on the Digital Patient Experience. We see several factors combining to enable patients to take greater control over their health, including:
· Regulation: Regardless of the specifics of healthcare regulation, we believe that the shift towards value based care is the future. Financial incentives, government imposed or otherwise, will force hospitals to consider the quality of care and outcomes.
· Patient Satisfaction: Patient satisfaction is becoming a primary objective of health systems as consumers are given more power and choice over their healthcare decisions. Hospitals are focusing more on the idea of brand loyalty than ever before.
· Provider ratings: The patient’s ability to rate their care and experience is becoming more prevalent as the patient becomes a consumer of healthcare.
· High deductible health plans: New high deductible health plans are shifting costs to the patient, encouraging patients to become a consumer of healthcare for the first time
· Increased patient access to data: Unprecedented access to health data arms individuals to take control of their health and wellness (e.g., wearables, patient portals).
· Increasing availability of healthcare content: 86% of patients conduct health related search before scheduling a doctor’s appointment, demonstrating that patients are actively seeking out information about their options. Providing accessible, high quality content is essential for all health care companies.
The winners in healthcare going forward will be those that own and embrace the Digital Patient Experience as a core offering. We look forward to working even more closely with Rishi, Shradha and the rest of the Outcome Health team to help them deliver on this vision, and we’re excited to welcome Outcome Health to the PGVC portfolio, joining other companies focused on the Digital Patient Experience such as AiCure, Analyte Health, Opternative, Prepared Health and SilverVue.