Like most people, I’d always been aware of how much time my family doctor spent looking at her computer or phone and how little time she spent looking at and talking to me. But the challenges of complex care delivery really hit home when a close friend, John, was diagnosed with colitis.
Keeping track of his medications and dietary restrictions, monitoring his symptoms, and getting swift feedback from his doctors was a mess of printouts, pill-bottle labels, Google searches and endless waits on hold. Patients had too many questions and doctors had too little time.
The more time I spent following doctors on rounds, the more I realized how fragmented care delivery has become in our healthcare system. Patients experience a profound sense of confusion about how to follow the recommendations of a care team, and a great sense of isolation once they leave the clinic. For patients, there’s no easy way to check-in for the reassurances and minor adjustments that need to be part of the care experience. Inside a hospital, patients are at the center of an impressively choreographed rotation of physicians and nurses. Yet, as successful as this system can be in delivering care within the four walls of the hospital, it collapses once the patient leaves.
Having seen and experienced these limitations first and second-hand and having a co-founder with a toolkit of technical resources, I was determined to impact healthcare on a scale bigger than any individual practitioner. Originally intent on being a practicing physician, I came to the realization that while I may have a direct impact on 10,000 patients in my lifetime, altering the way care is delivered could transform the healthcare experience for millions.
My co-founders and I started Memora Health because the way our healthcare system delivers care is years behind every other facet of our lives. Most interactions between patients and clinicians are cumbersome because the current approach was not built to deliver continuous and efficient care.
Memora is rewiring healthcare systems with modern technology, so that clinicians can again interact meaningfully with their patients, and patients can access healthcare information as easily as they can text their families and friends.
Built With Clinicians, For Clinicians
Committed to truly understanding the inner workings of a 3.8 trillion-dollar industry, we spent several months driving across the country and staying in Airbnbs, doing cold outreach or walk-ins at every doctor’s office or health system we came across. While each system and clinician was distinct in how they practiced and the tools they used, it was clear that any solution we would design would have to be highly adaptable and modular, easy to integrate, and intelligent at surfacing the right data at the right time.
When we rolled out the earliest version of Memora — a platform focused on automating medication adherence reminders and tracking — we were surprised to find that this singularly focused intervention moved the needle not just on actual healthcare outcomes, but also on how patients perceived the quality of their care. The more we learned from healthcare providers and administrators, the more we realized the need for a comprehensive platform that could radically improve the relationship between clinicians and patients and reshape how patient-reported data is used in delivering always-on, evidence-based care.
During our early days as a company, we were fortunate to work closely with Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a Harvard Medical School affiliate; Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, one of the largest public hospitals in the U.S, and Emory Healthcare, Georgia’s largest private healthcare system. In partnership with clinical and digital health teams at these systems, we began gradually expanding and iterating on the Memora platform — building out a repository of clinical intelligence across several care pathways, and building a deep understanding of clinical workflows and the incentives that enable organizations to deploy new technology at scale.
How Memora Works
We have spent the past three years quietly building the Memora platform, creating a strong evidence base for our interventions, building a mission-driven team, and recruiting an exceptional group of early adopters. Memora Health is now recognized as the most comprehensive end-to-end platform for helping patients navigate their care, while intelligently empowering clinicians to reach and manage patients outside the four walls of healthcare facilities.
Our platform fundamentally streamlines how patients access information about their healthcare, both before and after visits, while surfacing patient-reported insights to clinicians in a way that is actionable and clinically valuable.
There are three core principles that guide Memora:
- Make care delivery proactive, not reactive: Memora proactively delivers evidence-based pathways to patients that guide them through their care journey, educating them along the way and collecting key patient-reported data to inform risk continuously. The healthcare system knows the risks that an elderly patient faces a month after heart surgery, or that a mom faces a week after delivery of her baby — but our current system rarely reaches out proactively. Memora changes this.
- Enable the “Learning Health System”: Memora’s platform constantly learns and evolves as a patient’s health status as well as clinician behavior changes over time. For example, if providers begin managing a particular side effect with a new medication, Memora learns this behavior change and can offer to institutionalize it via automation going forward. This same infrastructure is also valuable in evaluating how clinical pathways and workflows are actually performing. These insights empower clinicians to make care delivery simultaneously more efficient and more personalized over time.
- Align incentives across the healthcare ecosystem: Memora models existing clinical workflows around documentation, time tracking, and escalation in order to identify areas where leveraging Memora’s platform has direct financial value — across reimbursement, quality measures, and operational efficiency. This also enables clinicians to practice at the top of their license, by leveraging automation where it can be helpful and by facilitating appropriate triage of patient-reported symptoms to the appropriate clinical team members.
We often think about how John’s care journey might have been different with Memora. As soon as his diagnosis was first documented in his medical record, he would have received a simple text message, powered by Memora. This would be the start of a six-week journey to become educated about his diagnosis and establish a trustworthy relationship with his care team. John would have used this channel to receive daily tips, respond to automated health questionnaires from his doctors, report remote monitoring data and symptoms for immediate escalation to his care team, and ask any questions he may have. In parallel, Memora’s engine would be operating in the background to constantly learn from the journeys of other patients like John, translating his symptoms into insights which dramatically improve the efficiency and accessibility of his care team. This model of proactive care delivery empowers patients like him to take control of their health and receive real-time assistance in navigating a complex care journey.
Having already served over 55 healthcare organizations and hundreds of thousands of patients, we’re excited to announce a $10.5M financing led by Andreessen Horowitz with participation from AlleyCorp, Martin Ventures, Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman’s Thirty Five Ventures, Sachin Jain, Zach Weinberg of Operator Partners, Edward Elmhurst Health System, B Capital, and Aaron Szekel.
We’ve come a long way, but we’re also just getting started. Memora is building the operating system for a new kind of care delivery — a platform that digitizes clinical workflows and normalizes how data can be leveraged to actually move our healthcare system towards a more value-aligned model across healthcare providers, health plans, and life science companies. At scale, Memora enables organizations to implement a truly intelligent, learning infrastructure that takes data from a stream of patient encounters and continuously refines clinical pathways that guide patients to the right level of care at the right time.
Along the way, we will continue to track every human story we learn. We’ve spoken with overworked clinicians burned out from their caseload, who’ve used Memora to reduce the time they spend on their screens and increase the time they spend face-to-face with patients. Patients like John who feel lost navigating their diagnosis and find comfort in the step-by-step guidance they get from Memora. And caregivers who feel out of the loop when tracking their loved ones, who are using Memora to coordinate with multiple care teams. Memora is built for the clinicians, patients, and caregivers who want to do the right thing but often struggle; we will constantly work towards helping them realize that help is not far away — sometimes it’s just a text away.