Ixlayer, a health tech company focused on lab testing, is now the platform for CVS Health home tests.
Initial home sample collection kits will target vitamin D, Lyme disease, sexually transmitted infections and thyroid function with a plan to expand early next year, executives told Fierce Healthcare. In addition to the kits, users will have access to a platform that transmits test results and resources for understanding them.
“At-home testing enables people to proactively take control of their health, on their own schedule, in the privacy of their own home and on a regular basis,” Pouria Sanae, co-founder and CEO of ixlayer, said in a press release. Creating more accessible and affordable health testing depends on “systemic changes and buy-in from key stakeholders and partners,” he added.
The startup, founded in 2018, allows partners to maintain their own brand while leveraging ixlayer’s “turnkey” solutions—preserving a brand “that patients trust, understand,” Sanae told Fierce Healthcare.
“It cannot be a single lab, it cannot be a single service and it cannot be our own brand,” he said. Instead, the key is to work with a partner already established in a community. The company provides the kits, platform and integration of all needed services to facilitate testing for partners. The tests are processed in independent, CLIA-certified labs. Apart from the retail market, ixlayer also supports payers, providers and pharma.
Today, 70% of medical decisions depend on lab test results. The problem, ixlayer argues, is that 40% of them go unfilled. One of the key issues is the inconvenience for consumers. “If you could increase the number of tests, you will significantly improve preventive care,” Sanae said. “This is really a cornerstone of moving health into the home.”
Some payers still take convincing to cover preventive tests, Sanae acknowledged. But, he said, “if you manage to identify a high-risk patient much earlier, it will in the long run be cheaper.” As more data become available on how cost-saving these solutions are, and as healthcare becomes more consumerized, this will become increasingly obvious, Sanae believes.
“We can power industry to move towards this. There’s no excuse,” Sanae said. “With us, you can get up and running and have in-home lab testing within six weeks.”
After purchasing a kit online or in stores, consumers activate it under independent clinician supervision. Once a sample is collected, the kit is mailed back and results are shown via an online portal. Consumers, who own the data, can then share the test results with a provider.
The test kits are now available online at cvs.com and in nearly 1,000 retail stores across 35 states.