Empty hospital bed

How Hospitals Make Money Without Heads in Beds

It’s no secret that healthcare is moving out of the hospital and increasingly into outpatient settings and patients’ homes. So what’s a bricks-and-mortar operation to do? Increasingly savvy systems and hospitals (with coffers to tap) are betting on early-stage investments in digital technology. Between 2012 and mid-2017, according to CB Insights, 15 major hospitals and their investment vehicles were involved in 167 investment or M&A deals. Of those, 55 were in digital health companies. Here are nine of those deals…

Dignity Health participated in the $50 million Series B financing for Doctor On Demand‘s video visit app, that enables patients to list their symptoms and be instantly connected to a doctor licensed in their state for a video visit.

Providence St. Joseph Health‘s Providence Ventures is a $150 million healthcare venture capital fund, which typically invests $8 million to $15 million in promising early- to mid-stage health IT, medical device and diagnostics firms; among them: patient feedback tech firm Binary Fountain, surgical blood-loss monitoring provider Gauss Surgical, and remote video interpreting business Indemand Interpreting, among others.

Ascension and Fairview Health Services were among the investors in the Series A for Zipnosis, which provides a white-labeled online treatment and diagnosis platform that enables “branded” virtual care clinics online or mobile with their own med professionals providing timely consultations designed to help patient treat themselves, schedule an in-clinic visit, or other clinical help.

Kaser Permanente Ventures was the most active investor with 38 deals between Q1’12 and Q1’17, including “in-the-moment” emotional support firm, Ginger.io, and the digital health therapeutics company Omada Health. They’ve also invested in Rock Health, a seed fund investor, and digital health incubator Startup Health.

Cedars-Sinai, UC San Diego, Dignity Health, and Geisinger Health System were all among the hospitals and clinics that Apple partnered with to develop iOS 11.3 – the new Health Records section in the Health app that lets you gather and view all your medical records.

So, planning ahead for a time when there will be fewer heads in beds, the smartest systems are investing their reserves in apps and technologies for healthcare consumers who may never step into their facilities.

Mimi Grant, President, Adaptive Business Leaders (ABL) Organization – Round Tables and Events for CEOs of Healthcare and Technology Companies