Ambience Healthcare reels in $70M for generative AI tools to battle clinician burnout

With the number of healthcare workers experiencing burnout at an all-time high, Ambience Healthcare is betting on artificial intelligence as a potential solution.

The San Francisco-based startup is developing a suite of tools to put generative AI front-and-center in clinicians’ workloads, and its plans to scale up the reach of its technology have just gotten a major boost in the form of a $70 million funding round.

The series B was co-led by Kleiner Perkins and OpenAI Startup Fund, with additional support from Andreessen Horowitz and Optum Ventures, Ambience announced this week. All four were existing backers of the company, whose lifetime funding now totals $100 million.

“The market has been screaming for a solution like Ambience, but even with the recent advances in generative AI, this has been an exceedingly challenging problem,” Mamoon Hamid, a partner at Kleiner Perkins, said in the release. “Getting the medicine right is hard. Getting the user experience right is hard. Navigating the complicated web of healthcare operations and driving ROI is hard.”

He continued, “Ambience’s users and customers—clinicians and healthcare leaders—rave about Ambience, and we couldn’t be more excited to be part of the company’s journey.”

Ambience also made room in the funding round for contributions from its hospital partners. Houston-based Memorial Hermann, for one, took it up on the offer, according to the announcement, investing an undisclosed amount in the company after experiencing the benefits of Ambience’s technology throughout the health system.

Ambience’s operating system currently includes a quartet of AI-powered tools. There’s AutoScribe, which writes up patient notes in real-time and automatically adds them to each patient’s electronic health record, and AutoCDI, a clinical documentation improvement tool that analyzes notes and health records to ensure all billing has been done properly and is accounted for.

AutoRefer, meanwhile, takes on the tedious process of writing referral letters both to and from primary care providers and specialists. Finally, AutoAVS is used to generate an after-visit summary for patients and their families and caregivers, putting together educational handouts—in their language of choice—that cover the topics discussed during an appointment.

And a fifth application is on the way: Dubbed AutoPrep, it will analyze patients’ medical history before a visit to give clinicians a suggested agenda for the appointment and alert them to any potential risk factors that may benefit from screening tests.

The tools are programmed to be used across all medical specialties and hospital departments. Altogether, according to Ambience, its platform can improve hospitals’ coding integrity and slash their clinicians’ documentation time by nearly 80% on average. So far, in addition to Memorial Hermann, other major health systems that have installed Ambience’s generative AI include UCSF, John Muir Health and The Oncology Institute, among others.