BALTIMORE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--WellDoc®, developers of the first FDA cleared mobile prescription therapy, BlueStarTM, announced today that it received funding from its first institutional investors, Merck Global Health Innovation Fund and Windham Venture Partners, as part of a $20M round of financing that now broadens its capitalization beyond its initial group of angel investors. For a limited time, WellDoc and its investors will also explore the possibility of adding co-investors that bring strategic value to the company.
"Our new investors share WellDoc's vision of fundamentally changing how people manage their chronic diseases to improve outcomes and reduce costs," said Ryan Sysko, co-founder and CEO of WellDoc. "This investment will help WellDoc launch and commercialize BlueStar, the world's first Mobile Prescription Therapy for type 2 diabetes, on a nationwide basis."
WellDoc's flagship product, BlueStar, is a first-in-class, patient-centered product cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in July 2010 for use by adults living with type 2 diabetes. BlueStar requires a prescription from a licensed healthcare provider and can be dispensed and reimbursed through a pharmacy. The new product is powered by WellDoc's proprietary Automated Expert Analytics System™ and enables patients to self-manage their diabetes through real-time motivational, behavioral and educational coaching. BlueStar coordinates care by helping patients adhere to their treatment plan while also providing clinical decision support to the patient's healthcare provider to optimize treatment decisions.
"WellDoc's equity investment is another example of how successful the State of Maryland has been in implementing its innovation agenda. We've created an environment in Maryland that promotes job growth and fosters cutting edge innovation," said Governor Martin O'Malley. "WellDoc is pioneering the development of evidence-based medical products which are necessary to solve the complex healthcare challenges of the 21st century."
"WellDoc's leading-edge, patient self-management platform has the potential to become an integral component in the management of chronic disease," said Maxwell Kahn, managing director, Merck Global Health Innovation Fund. "We are excited to invest in this prominent mHealth company because the ability to use and transform patient data into actionable information has the potential to substantially reduce healthcare costs and improve outcomes."
According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA)1, more than 45 percent of all Americans suffer from at least one chronic disease and 25.8 million people in the U.S. (approximately 8.3 percent of the population) suffer from diabetes. The ADA estimates the total annual cost of diagnosed diabetes in 2012 was $245 billion, including $176 billion in direct medical costs and an additional $69 billion from reduced productivity.
"We have known the team at WellDoc for many years and are impressed with their significant progress over that time. Our support for WellDoc is part of our ongoing effort to identify and fund innovations that improve care, reduce costs, and align with technology and public policy trends and WellDoc does all three," said Adam E. Fine, CEO of Windham Venture Partners, a healthcare focused venture fund based in New York, NY. Adam co-founded Windham with his father, Roger S. Fine, retired General Counsel of Johnson & Johnson.
About WellDoc: Engaging Patients, Enhancing Outcomes™
WellDoc, a healthcare behavioral science and technology company that develops solutions aimed at engaging patients and enhancing health outcomes, is focused on simplifying the way chronic diseases are managed through a collaborative, life-changing approach that breaks down the barriers of engagement and adherence by providing patients and their healthcare providers with real-time, actionable information. WellDoc has developed an industry-leading, technology-based platform designed to help people with chronic diseases better manage their conditions. Forbes selected WellDoc as one of "America's Most Promising Companies" based on its potential for future growth. For more information visit: www.welldoc.com
1 National Diabetes Fact Sheet jointly produced by the CDC, NIH, ADA, and other organizations.