Saturday, February 9, 2013

Entrepreneurship in Healthcare

The health law passed in 2010, now come to be known more commonly as Obamacare, seems to have inspired a bourgeoning of health care centric entrepreneurial activity.

The Economist writes:

"Smaller companies are coming up with ways to help bigger ones cope. Venture-capital firms see at least two promising areas: companies that serve consumers directly and those that help hospitals provide better, cheaper care. For some firms, Obamacare is a direct boon. For example,, which helps people choose health insurance online, is also helping set up California’s insurance exchange. Since the election more states have asked about its services. Peter Hudson of iTriage, which lets a patient tap symptoms into a mobile app and search for doctors nearby, thinks Obamacare will add to his firm’s growth. By directing patients to general practitioners rather than pricey specialists, iTriage may cut costs for ACOs."

I continue to keep an ear out to this sector to see if Obamacare does truly enable a resurgence of creativity where it usually comes from, the one or two man shop, the tinkerer, the thinker of impossible concepts, ... the entrepreneur.

Perhaps, here the political aisles are being crossed?

"The most interesting model may belong to athenahealth, which offers hospitals and doctors billing, electronic health records and other services. Start-ups pitch to athena’s customers at the company’s “More Disruption Please” conference. The winners get to offer their products to the 35,000 doctors in athena’s network, alongside athena’s own. HealthFinch and iTriage are both due to join. Jonathan Bush, athena’s boss (and a cousin of George W.) favours young companies that help hospitals work better by doing the jobs “that all doctors hate and suck at”."

Read the complete article here.

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