Two home-focused health care startups — one familiar and one new — have raised a boatload of cash to grow their businesses.
With guidance from former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and other well-known operators, CareBridge launched Monday by announcing an initial $40 million funding round. On the same day, the business that runs Hometeam announced it had raised $30 million in Series A and was rebranding to Vesta Healthcare.
Both companies received funding from Oak HC/FT, a venture capital and private equity firm that focuses on health care.
Nashville, Tennessee-based CareBridge is a technology company that leverages electronic visit verification (EVV), data aggregation and predictive analytics in connection to long-term support services (LTSS). CareBridge was formed following the strategic acquisition of HealthStar and Sinq Technologies.
“CareBridge is bringing a unique approach to the long-term services and supports space,” Dr. Tunde Sotunde, Anthem’s president of Medicaid, said in a statement. “By combining EVV and data aggregation technology with more comprehensive member and decision support services, CareBridge will allow states and health plans to deliver whole-person health solutions for their LTSS members in a more effective manner, helping improve health and well-being.”
CareBridge is far from Frist’s first foray into the health care arena. He co-founded home- and outpatient-based palliative care provider Aspire Health in 2013 with Brad Smith, who now serves as head of the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI).
“As I look to the coming months and years, I think the biggest tailwind is this whole concept of moving the hospital to the home,” Frist previously told Home Health Care News. “I see this massive movement away from hospitals. There are always going to be hospitals, but with telemedicine, with better outreach, technology and the engagement of individual patients, that will be accelerated over time.”
Although Anthem acquired Aspire in 2018, Frist has remained active in the health care space, particularly with in-home care. Those activities include his role as a partner in VC firm Frist Cressey Ventures.
Mike Tudeen will serve as CEO of CareBridge. Tudeen previously served as CEO of PopHealthcare, a risk-adjustment and complex care company that sold to Guidewell in 2017; he also served as CEO of INSPIRIS, an in-home complex care company that sold to Optum in 2011.
David Baiada — CEO of Bayada Home Health Care, one of the largest home health providers in the U.S. — will serve as one of CareBridge’s board members. Along with Oak HC/FT, GV is also an investor.
While CareBridge is new on the home-based care scene, HHCN readers should be somewhat familiar with Vesta Healthcare — or, at least, its Hometeam ties.
Vesta Healthcare — formerly known as HT Health, the developer of Hometeam — is a New York-based technology and clinical services company that connects caregivers and care teams through its platforms.
“Caregivers are in the home supporting patients with high needs every day,” Randy Klein, CEO of Vesta Healthcare, said in a statement. “They are on the front lines and the first to notice changes in the health of their loved ones or care recipients, but too often, their insights are not connected back to the care team to take timely action that could prevent unnecessary ED visits, hospitalizations and readmissions.”
In 2018, Vesta Healthcare transitioned from a direct-to-consumer business model to one where it partners with other agencies and insurers. The company also went from private pay and Medicaid to a payment structure based on Medicare-Medicaid dual eligibles.
In addition to Oak HC/FT, investors include Deerfield Management Company, Lux Capital, Kaiser Permanente Ventures, Generator Ventures, CareCentrix, Epstein Partners and Nationwide Ventures.
Vesta Healthcare plans to deploy its new capital to expand product development, engineering and its sales and marketing departments. Vesta is currently growing in Massachusetts, with live programs with Commonwealth Care Alliance and Element Care PACE and plans for 2020 growth into new markets.