WellFrame

This weekend, I caught up with CTO and co-founder of WellFrame, Vinayak Ramesh. WellFrame is a Boston-based B2B health IT company focused on improving care management of patients with acute or chronic diseases. Today, insurance companies will do disease management in house or contract out follow-ups. This involves call centers with nurses who sort through lists of patients, call them by phone, gather information on personal care, and giving insurers an idea of how the population is behaving. Inefficiencies in this system including limited access to patients by phone, the tedious and subjective nature of this type of data collection, and low sampling frequency result in minimal information gathering. To this end, WellFrame has developed a product that uses mobile to gather more intelligent data from patients. The product has two interfaces – a mobile app for patients, which allows them to engage in personal care for a chronic condition or after a major procedure and a web dashboard, which allows care managers to check in and manage patients.

While many apps with similar goals choose to target customers in the healthy fit crowd or hospitals, WellFrame very quickly learned that these markets were not the ones most incentivized by their product. WellFrame found that insurance and care management companies were very interested in managing and mitigating risk during the recovery process, and were invested in finding better strategies to improve patient engagement to minimize costs incurred from unnecessary hospital visits or tests. The dual nature of WellFrame’s product incentivizes care management companies by providing them with an intelligent, data-driven interface that allows them to manage thousands of patients at once, and reach out to multiple patients asynchronously.

The company is positioned to offer a product, which eases the nature of work done by care managers and insurers. As clinical medicine is an area of industry, which demands and implements vetted products, WellFrame sought out the route of validating their product with clinical trials. In collaboration with South Shore Hospital, WellFrame published the results of their technology for a cardiac rehab application [1]. The peer-reviewed study validated patient engagement with WellFrame’s technology and was key in gaining traction with their first customers. WellFrame is rapidly growing it company, and expects near 100,000 users by mid-2015. The company announced a successful venture financing round, raising $8.5 M in Series A funding [2].

[1] http://journals.lww.com/jcrjournal/Abstract/publishahead/Utility_and_Efficacy_of_a_Sm
[2] http://www.xconomy.com/boston/2014/09/08/wellframe-wins-8-5m-to-improve-healthcare-apps-for-patients-doctors/

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