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Two Healthcare Startups Land Venture Funding For Growth

Xconomy Boston — 

Healthcare startups have for years built businesses on the principle of ridding the system of inefficiencies and extra costs for years. Two more gained venture backing today.

DigiSight Technologies is using a $7.8 million Series B round to further develop a mobile technology that lets physicians monitor patients between appointments. The Portola Valley, CA, company is first specializing in ophthalmology patients, who can test their vision using in the DigiSight app, which transmits the results data to the doctor’s office, the company said in a statement. It allows the patient and the doctor to track any vision loss, potentially prompting an alert to schedule an in-office visit, DigiSight says on its website.

“Ophthalmology is a specialty well-suited to using mobile tests and diagnostics,” CEO Doug Foster said in the statement. “Generating more patient data can profoundly impact the ability to deliver high quality, cost-efficient care for these patients.”

The company was founded by Mark Blumenkranz and Daniel Palanker of Stanford University, who previously have worked together at Optimedica Corporation and PEAK Surgical. Blumenkranz also founded Avalanche Biotechnologies (Nasdaq:AAVL). The venture funding came from Biosys Capital, Waycross Ventures, GE Ventures, and Lagunita.

Meanwhile, ePatientFinder is trying to connect companies with potential participants for their clinical trials. The company, based in Austin, TX, is using $2.58 million of Series A funding to further build out its network of physicians who can find out about clinical trials and potentially recommend them to patients.

Doctors who use ePatientFinder’s platform are notified when one of the company’s clients—such as contract research organizations, or medical-device and pharmaceutical companies—are recruiting for a new clinical trial.

The new funding came from Parsons & Whittemore and a group of angel investors.

Plenty of other ideas are circulating on how to better implement healthcare services in the U.S. Xconomy’s Michael Davidson covered last November changes that one consulting firm expects technology will have on healthcare, such as the extent to which activity trackers and wellness apps will encourage better habits or the impact of apps that can help people self-diagnose. And I recently wrote about Iora Health, which is trying to cut costs by encouraging greater use of primary care.