KeyCare, the only telehealth platform developed with medical records provider Epic Systems, nabbed $24 million in series A funding.
The series was backed by 8VC, LRV Health, Bold Capital and Spectrum Health Ventures with faith in the platform's ability to expand digital access to care through its unique system. KeyCare said in a statement that, unlike other telehealth platforms, it offers a one-stop shop for digital health needs unified by Epic's electronic health records system. The company nodded to the demand for such services during record healthcare staffing shortages.
"KeyCare is addressing health systems’ critical need for virtual staffing options that provide patients with high-quality and integrated virtual care,” said Sebastian Caliri, partner at 8VC, in a statement. “By building with the Epic platform and working closely with health systems, KeyCare is in a unique position to improve patient access, expand provider capacity and streamline care delivery across the country by giving patients access to 24/7, 50-state urgent care virtualists across their connected Epic platforms."
KeyCare’s founder and CEO Lyle Berkowitz, M.D., said in an email to Fierce Healthcare that the platform's certified use of Epic’s EHR allows for a broad range of care including primary, specialty and remote patient monitoring. Berkowitz said the other primary advantage of the system is its ability to share patient data and scheduling between the platform and health system providers.
He emphasized how the benefits of the partnership trickle down to patients themselves. By allowing providers to access and edit patients' records, patients are not forced to negotiate myriad systems. According to KeyCare, medical professionals licensed across state lines can directly update the records of patients' primary care physicians on the platform, freeing patients from functioning as a medical go-between.
“People expect a connected and convenient digital care experience,” said Alan Hutchison, vice president of population health at Epic, in a statement. “Rather than routing them through a disconnected, standalone system, KeyCare unifies the virtual care experience in concert with participating hospitals and health systems.”
So, what does the one-of-a-kind system look like? Berkowitz provided a scenario where a patient accesses their health system’s MyChart portal in search of an urgent care visit. Even if the patient is out of state or seeking care in the middle of the night or during high-traffic hours, they can easily access care from a virtual provider. Without ever leaving their health system portal, creating new logins or inputting their medical history, patients can receive care. Following the visit, an "after visit summary" will automatically be shared with the patient’s health system MyChart portal. The system was first utilized successfully this July in partnership with Beaumont Health and Spectrum Health West Michigan Division.
“Working with KeyCare allows us to provide a tremendously convenient experience for our patients while ensuring quality via robust data sharing and streamlined clinical workflows between our two Epic instances,” said Mandy Reed, BHSH Spectrum Health West Michigan’s director of virtual health operations, in the press release. “After working with numerous telehealth providers in the past, I can say with confidence that there is no other virtual care platform that can match KeyCare’s capabilities."
Berkowitz said through this collaboration, providers were able to make better-informed decisions as to patient care due to access to complete medical records. Additionally, he said optimizing the system allowed physicians to work “to the top of their license.”
“We are built to be of service to health systems and their providers … and we are doing this by looking to take the routine, low-value care activities off their plates, and handle them more efficiently and cost-effectively–while also ensuring a great experience and high-quality care,” Berkowitz said in an email to Fierce Healthcare. “Being on the same EHR system as them provides us with a unique capability to meet this challenge.”
As patients needing routine care are routed to virtual care professionals, Berkowitz said office-based physicians and staff can direct their attention toward patients requiring in-person care. KeyCare hopes to ease patients’ continued transition to virtual spaces, therefore expanding the population receiving treatment.