Earlier this month, ContextMedia:Health announced the acquisition of AccentHealth in an all-cash purchase. Through this acquisition, ContextMedia:Health becomes the largest healthcare decision platform at the point of care in the United States. PM360 recently spoke with Shradha Agarwal, ContextMedia:Health’s President & Co-founder, about the acquisition, what’s next for the company, and what this means for healthcare, and the point of care space, in general.
PM360: What led to this acquisition of AccentHealth?
Shradha Agarwal: Both of our companies have a very similar mission: To be able to inspire better patient outcomes through leveraging point of care technologies. The reason we had all of these great synergies with AccentHealth, in particular, is because they operate a digital media network at the point of care, and we have a healthcare decision platform that has different components that powers interactivity with patients and physicians to improve dialogue and health outcomes in measurable ways. Our mission is to bring this decision platform to every doctor’s office in the county. Acquiring AccentHealth and its 30,000 practices allows for us to be able to introduce our technologies into those healthcare practices as well.
Beyond that access to the more practices, is there any other advantage to acquiring them?
Absolutely, because now a lot of our partners across the board, whether it’s the medical associations or the life science companies that we work with, now have the ability to really get their message to a wider audience more consistently and more effectively. Our physicians and providers are mutually excited about this news as well, because they now have a consistency of user experiences and a deeper level of engagement through the enhanced technology.
Since you fully acquired AccentHealth, how will the two companies operate moving forward?
For the next few quarters, we are operating as two individual companies. One of the things we want to do is make deep investments into the AccentHealth network of offices to bring our technologies into their provider sites and even to provide patient and physicians all of the tools to engage with each other during the dialogues happening in consultation rooms around the country.
And what happens to the leadership from AccentHealth?
During this transition time both companies and both leadership teams are operating independently. Their entire team—both in New York and in Tampa—has been really excited about being part of the ContextMedia:Health family now, and we’re spending some time with both the New York and Tampa team to recognize what the integration path looks like.
What’s next following this acquisition?
We’re really excited to be able to serve the combined presence of 200,000 physicians who are able to leverage our technologies—that translates into 500 million outpatient consultations each year. And we’re so inspired to continue to innovate on our technology platform and find new ways of delivering measurable outcomes at the point of care. We’ve see some great early results both through claims data as well as through pharmacy data and being able to help people understand the chronic condition, the treatment paths, as well as the lifestyle changes that drive these outcomes.
Think about the macro level of the impact of this: 17.5% of our GDP is spent on healthcare and 80% of that is attributable to chronic condition treatments. We are already starting to see strong results in some of the 55,000 offices we are currently in and we plan to be in 70% of all healthcare practices by 2020. We are inspired by what this means at an economic level for the country as well as the individual realization of the health outcomes that a patient feels through the engagement tools that we’re providing them.
Speaking to those results you mentioned. A recent review by the Quality Resource and Use Report found that an office integrated with ContextMedia:Health technology reported an 82% lower rate of hospital cases for urinary tract infections, a 58% lower rate for patients with diabetes, and a 33% lower rate for those with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or asthma compared to the national average. But I was wondering whether that success is tied to any one of your offerings in particular?
What we’ve seen from our studies is the results are the highest in offices with the full integration of our platform. If you think about the patient journey, there’s multiple ways to inform, engage, and then activate into the right decisions being made in physicians’ consultation rooms.
One of our most popular devices has been a 32-inch large format tablet that has 3D anatomical models that physicians are leveraging to explain the condition and the treatment path with mechanism of action videos. And then, physicians will be able to email the patient supporting materials such as a co-pay cards or healthy recipes. But we also have tools in the waiting room as well as in the examination room for the patient before the doctor walks in. So, it’s really that integrated platform that we’ve seen to be the most powerful.
Do you have any future additions to your portfolio of offerings that you can talk about?
We have some very exciting things that we’re working on. One of the areas that we feel strongly in is continuing to provide ways for physicians to be abreast of the elements happening in their specialty and their universe as well. We’re seeing a greater number of requests from both physicians and nurses to be able to keep up with news and developments and novel therapies coming to market, so that’s an area that we’re investing deeply in.
The other area that we’re continuing to invest in is clinical trials research. We are exploring the opportunity to accelerate cures into the marketplace by being able to remove the friction and fragmentation of identifying patients who might qualify for a clinical trial that not only could be lifesaving for them—it could be lifesaving for millions of others living with the same condition.
Finally, how do you see this acquisition affecting the point of care space overall?
Point of care has often been considered sort of this niche industry. But the power of the decisions that are being made globally and nationally in the consultation rooms can have a massive impact on both the individual as well as our economy. Now we finally have the skills in our industry to deliver these outcomes for patients at this particular scale, which is truly exciting for us as we continue to march towards ubiquity and being able to bring these technologies and decision platforms to every consultation room in the world.