It’s no secret that the fragmented US healthcare system is severely ill, suffering from astronomical costs, uneven access to care, cumbersome regulations, low patient satisfaction, practitioner shortages and other grave symptoms.
Approximately 30 million Americans have no health insurance coverage and therefore struggle to pay for medical care and medications.
The senior editor of Harvard Health Publishing words his grim diagnosis this way: “Is the US healthcare system expensive, complicated, dysfunctional, or broken? The simple answer is yes to all.”
In Israel, where citizens enjoy universal medical coverage and a high standard of care, entrepreneurs see an opportunity to improve the American healthcare experience.
One way is by continuing to pioneer advanced medical devices and technologies as we’ve done for decades.
A newer approach is finding high-tech solutions to overall problems in the distribution of healthcare in the United States.
It takes a little chutzpah for residents of a tiny country thousands of miles away to tackle a mammoth challenge far away. But that’s what Israeli ingenuity is all about.
Below, a sampling of some of the best Israeli solutions to the American healthcare crisis.
Srulik Dvorsky, cofounder and CEO of TailorMed, told ISRAEL21c that due to substantial out-of-pocket expenses even for insured patients, “American healthcare providers face a $40 billion uncompensated care problem because of patients who cannot afford the high cost of treatment.”
TailorMed’s automated system helps healthcare organizations remove financial barriers by identifying financially at-risk patients and matching them with relevant opportunities across 6,000 resources — copay assistance, replacement drug programs, government subsidies, funds from community, state or disease-specific foundations, and programs that help with living expenses.
TailorMed’s platform is deployed at more than 1,000 sites including Providence Health, UnityPoint Health, Yale-New Haven Health and Advocate Aurora Health.
An Almeda Ventures portfolio company, TailorMed also has new investments from Ballad Ventures, Inception Health and University Hospitals Ventures.
“University Hospitals is already seeing the impact to our hospital and our patients through our customer relationship with TailorMed,” said Matthew Zenker, Senior Portfolio Manager at University Hospitals Ventures. “We are proud to invest alongside so many likeminded institutions in a company that is making healthcare more accessible and affordable for all.”
The founders of Antidote Health decided to build a digital health maintenance organization (HMO) geared to the millions of US citizens earning too much to be eligible for public health insurance and too little for adequate private coverage.
Antidote’s online telehealth service offers one-time remote doctor visits starting at $49 and low-cost monthly subscriptions for individuals and families. The plan covers online acute or primary care checkups and prescriptions without deductibles or copays.
The service is available to anyone with an Internet connection in specific states (the number is 21 and growing rapidly). Mental health, diabetes and hypertension care can be included.
Navina’s mission is to improve clinical workflow and patient interactions and outcomes by ending the need to search through all the data in patients’ electronic health records before and after visits.
Using proprietary AI that integrates and consolidates data from EHRs and other sources, Navina builds an actionable “Patient Portrait” that allows physicians to review any case in minutes and complete documentation with a click.
The Innovation Lab of the American Academy of Family Physicians found that Navina’s platform reduced pre-visit preparation time by up to 70% and led to a 23% increase in diagnoses found and a 38% increase in risk-adjustment scores. The company recently raised $22 million to expand its reach across US primary-care practices.
Nintex helps healthcare providers reduce costs, save time and increase patient satisfaction by automating workflows and removing paper-based processes while remaining compliant with complex and constantly changing healthcare data regulations.
Rick Casteel, VP of IT at University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health, said employee productivity was bogged down by manual processes that made it challenging to comply with patient privacy and security regulations.
After adopting Nintex Advanced Workflow to automate account creation, deletion and the steps in between, Casteel says, “we could ensure that we handle the whole process in a consistent fashion, minimize the risk of human error and free up IT staff for more valuable tasks.”
Started in 2010 in Israel as Simplee, Flywire – now headquartered in Boston – kicked off a digital revolution in simplified healthcare payment plans, personalized according to patients’ capacity to pay and consolidated across multiple accounts.
The new Chicago ARC is a healthcare venture collaborative created by Israel’s Sheba Medical Center in the model of its own ARC (Accelerate, Redesign, Collaborate) Innovation Center.
Chicago ARC, in partnership with OSF HealthCare, University of Illinois and Illinois Tech, is dedicated to advancing equity in the management of chronic diseases and access to quality behavioral health services with a focus on people with substance use disorder.
The group plans to create a hub of health innovation to position the Illinois and Midwest region — the third largest US healthcare market — as a global destination for innovators and startups looking to transform healthcare.
Sheba will collaborate with Chicago ARC partners on sharing and developing technology-based care model best practices.
“The Chicago ARC and its network of leading partner organizations creates the ideal way for Sheba to translate our learnings and best practices to the US healthcare market,” said Dr. Eyal Zimlichman, deputy director general, chief transformation officer and chief innovation officer at Sheba Medical Center.