Galileo taps Elation Heath to roll out EHR for thousands of complex patients

Tech-enabled medical group Galileo is teaming up with Elation Health to roll out its software across Galileo's 50-state primary care practice. 

Founded by Thomas Lee, M.D., the healthcare pioneer behind One Medical and Epocrates, Galileo is a risk-bearing medical group that offers high-touch, multispecialty, longitudinal care to diverse and complex patients. The company works with regional and national health plans, employers and Fortune 500 organizations to provide medical care to populations.

Galileo also offers a complex care model for Medicare and Medicaid patients.

"We have a multimodal, multidisciplinary model of care. We are delivering care in the home. We are delivering care through mobile units that are these outfitted Airstream trailers and vans that we bring to community sites. We're delivering care by text and phone and video," Julia McDowell, Galileo's general manager of care delivery, said in an interview.

Galileo provides longitudinal virtual primary care to thousands of patients across the country and staffs a full multidisciplinary care team to provide medical care and behavioral health care as well as social care and personal needs intervention to patients in their homes. 

"We need an EHR that can not just handle the clinical needs but can also connect with systems we use to manage social benefits for patients and manage their behavioral needs. With Elation's technology, it was really the connectivity and the ability to seamlessly transfer data and information so that at any point of care, all of our clinicians and nonclinical care team members have access to that patient-centered view of what a patient needs at a given point in time. That helps our care teams develop a highly personalized care plan for patients," McDowell said.

Through the Elation Health application programming interface (API), Galileo clinicians can now automate and customize alerts at the point of care to maximize their value-based contracts. Elation’s clinical-first approach means its API gives customers the ability to build proprietary applications that drive cross-collaboration for clinical and operations teams to scale to more than 1 million daily API calls, according to Elation Health executives.

Elation Health, a 10-year-old company, works across traditional and newer care settings including small independent practices, onsite employer clinics, at-home models and hybrid teams. The EHR company serves 24,000 clinicians caring for millions of Americans. 

Galileo's care model is "heavily data-driven," McDowell noted, and the company uses proprietary analytics tools to risk stratify patients and identify the type of care patients need.

"Being able to pull structured data easily out of an EHR and integrate it with data that we have, with data we get from other sources, is really important to make sure that we can deliver that sort of personalized care model across these multidisciplinary team members as well as modalities of care," she said.

Elation Health, an EHR company for primary care, is "purpose-built" as a platform for high-value primary care, said Kyna Fong, Ph.D., CEO and co-founder of Elation Health.

"Galileo is a phenomenal example of that. With Tom Lee at the helm, he has an incredible background in innovating in primary care. At One Medical, he made some of those early decisions to invest heavily in building their own EHR from scratch because he saw that nothing out there really supported the type of modern primary care that he envisions," Fong said.

"I think with Galileo, they continue to be strong investors in their technology but I see they see Elation as a great fit for them. We take care of sort of the nuts and bolts of what you need in a modern high-value, primary care environment and we provide the APIs, the tools and the infrastructure that lets them innovate on top of us and build on top of us and really focus their own technology investments on their secret sauce," she noted.

Fong added, "That enables us to accelerate their time to value and their ability to keep innovating and creating a model of care that can have tremendously positive outcomes for patients."

“After a thorough evaluation of the market it was clear that Elation was the best partner to meet the needs of our complex care business,” Lee, CEO of Galileo, said in a statement. "The scalability of Elation’s platform, vision for supporting value-based care, and clinically driven technology were key factors in our decision."

Elation built solutions that automate and streamline the amount of manual intervention required in a doctor’s daily tasks. The company's EHR platform will provide automation and customizable alerts that will be valuable for Galileo clinicians on the ground and interacting with patients virtually.

"We'll be able to provide quick alerts for things like, this patient needs a behavioral health screening," McDowell said. "These interactions with patients are sort of dynamic and they're happening with multiple team members in multiple settings and so that functionality is really important."

Elation Health’s approach to primary care technology is based on a clinical-first design, intuitive charting, seamless integration and API-first development. The company boasts that its technology has helped enterprise clients achieve success in value-based care models, driving results such as 30% healthcare cost savings and four times reduction in referrals to high-cost specialists. 

The company has raised $108 million to date, nabbing a $50 million series D round back in July. That round was co-led by Generation Investment Management and Ascension Ventures with participation from Threshold Ventures, Ascend Partners and individual investors including Fay Rotenberg and Jonathan Bush. The company is using that fresh funding to continue rapidly scaling its market reach and platform features.

Fong founded Elation with her brother as they both worked in their father's primary care practice growing up and saw firsthand all the challenges physicians face when working with technology. They built Elation to have an API-driven open architecture that allows its customers and partners to build the functionality they want.

As Elation grows, it also is now competing with larger EHR competitors for business. 

"We are moving into larger [medical] groups," Fong said. "We're fortunate that we're seeing a lot of growth with these types of customers and so we're coming up against the big players, so to speak, the incumbents."

But Elation Health specifically designed its technology to support value-based care as the healthcare industry increasingly shifts to focusing on value rather than volume.

"One of the things that plagued a lot of the incumbents is they try to be everything to everybody. But what we do is probably the hardest for them, right? Because it's actually rethinking care delivery from the ground up to be value, first and foremost, as opposed to volume."

The traditional electronic medical record system was built to be an offshoot of a billing system for fee-for-service. "This means the EHR was really architected around an encounter, like a physical in-person encounter, because that's the thing that gets paid for and you can charge fees for that visit.

"Whereas when you're thinking about value-based care and thinking about outcomes for patients and managing costs, it's actually not just the face-to-face in-person encounter. I think of it as really flipping the technology on its head. The technology that's needed to support success in a value-based environment versus the traditional fee-for-service," Fong said.

Elation is the operating technology for many of the largest and fastest-growing primary care innovators such as Crossover Health, Cityblock Health and Firefly Health.

"We're investing heavily in innovators in primary care," Fong said.