Portfolio News6/17/21

Healthcare’s data, interoperability, and workflow backbone: Announcing our investment in Zus Health

Historically, the fragmented nature of the U.S. healthcare system has made it nearly impossible for providers, pharmacies, and payers to collaborate and provide coordinated care—and patients have traditionally had almost no access to or control over their own health data. There has generally been little in the way of effective, HIPAA-compliant data sharing between healthcare stakeholders, leaving valuable—and potentially life-saving information—stuck in data silos.

For example, a patient with kidney disease may receive care through a patchwork system in which primary care and specialist providers do not share an EHR nor communicate about the patient’s care. If the patient is hospitalized, her treatment plan may be changed, but that information would often fail to make its way back to the patient’s provider team. Information silos cause care gaps and delays that impact health outcomes and costs. Almost as bad, the information silos that cause gaps in care also hamper innovators and entrepreneurs, slowing their progress on the core cost, quality, and access issues within our healthcare system.

But there’s good news. Due to ongoing regulatory reform and an explosion of digital health venture capital funding, the healthcare value chain is being rewired. Full-stack digital health providers including Rock Health portfolio companies like Virta, Omada, and Vivante, as well as tech-forward providers like One Medical, are operating at the same scale as well-established provider groups and fully integrated across the patient care journey. While the patient experience has improved, the majority of digital health companies are building their core tech stacks from scratch—an expensive, laborious process requiring extensive work on non-strategic functionality like compliance, data management, and interoperability.

The challenges—and possibilities—for those building digital health services and solutions has never been greater. We believe there is a significant opportunity to develop infrastructure that helps the builder community share data and develop disruptive digital health offerings at greater speed and lower cost.

To that end, we are thrilled to announce our investment in Zus Health, a Jonathan Bush-led startup creating the healthcare industry’s first development platform backed by shared data records. Rock Health is proud to join Andreessen Horowitz, F-Prime Capital, Maverick Ventures, Martin Ventures, and Oxeon Investments in Zus’ $34M Series A financing.

Zus’ federated data platform will provide entrepreneurs with tools such as patient relationship management and provider workflow apps, patient data aggregators, a FHIR-native health record infrastructure, and patient-driven authorization tools. The result? A new wave of digital health innovators empowered to create high-value offerings—without reinventing the core tech system.

We at Rock Health know infrastructure doesn’t get everyone as excited as kids on the first day of summer. But we’re not like the other kids—and neither are Jonathan and the team at Zus Health. We couldn’t be more excited to get started on this journey with them. And if you’re building a digital health company or innovating anywhere in the healthcare ecosystem, we hope you will be too.

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