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Stanis is also a co-founder of Google's Verily Life Sciences
Steven Loeb speaks with Tom Stanis, CEO of Story Health, a company that uses virtual care and AI technology to bring high acuity cardiac care into the patient's home.
Story Health works with health systems so that clinicians can introduce Story Health to their patients, either during a visit or virtually between visits. The clinician explains how it works, and the fact that it allows them to optimize their care between clinic visits, after which the patient goes home with a welcome kit including medication organization tools, remote monitoring devices, and a connection to their care team via SMS on their phone.
The company's health coaching team schedules an initial phone call with the patient to walk them through the process and then the patient starts their care plan. They're guided through escalating therapies, taking readings at home, and getting lab work done.
Story Health recently raised a $22.6 million series A funding round co-led by Northpond Ventures and B Capital Group.
Our overall goal is to understand how technology is radically changing healthcare: the way we screen, treat and measure progress and outcomes. How we’re empowering the consumer. Whether we’re creating productivity that drives economic costs down? And how tech advancements change the role of the doctor.
Highlights from the interview:
- The origins of Story Health come from when Stanis was hit by a car while riding his bike. While he didn’t break any bones, the doctors did discover a mass on his kidney, which turned out to be stage one kidney cancer. By catching it early, he was able to survive. That is what led him to co-founder Verily at Google, the idea being to use AI to detect health problems before they became serious.
- He was also inspired by his father, who had a stroke, and who had multiple medications that had various side effects but very little contact with the clinicians, as they didn't have the tools to monitor patients outside of the office. Story Health is trying to figure out how to help these specialists be able to direct their care outside of the clinical setting.
- There are six and a half million people in the United States alone that are living with heart failure. More than 40% of Americans over the age of 40 have hypertension, which can lead to stroke and others issues. Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the US. All of that made cardiology a ripe area for Story Health to apply its technology.
- The company increases the kind of impact of cardiologists, as the country is getting older and a lot of cardiologists are retiring. Right now, cardiologists may see patients once a month or once every two weeks. With Story Health, they can treat them completely asynchronously at home so they can actually be able to see more new patients. The platform also automates and delegates the work that a cardiologist is doing that they don't need to be doing.
- Story Health was launched in December 2020, during COVID, which changed the way patients thought about their own health. Hundreds of thousands of people die every year from heart disease, and once you put that in context of COVID, people start to realize it's also a pandemic. People are also more willing to monitor at home and they are expecting a consumer-like experience with healthcare. They had the first taste of that with video visits during COVID and it's really opened the floodgates.
- There are hundreds of patients on Story Health now and 85% of them engage on a daily basis. That's because it acts as an extension of their existing doctor relationship, and it also helps them feel like someone's watching out for them when they're on a platform like this.
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