Health Catalyst scoops up patient engagement company Twistle

Mergers and acquisitions deals consolidation
Health Catalyst anticipates that Twistle’s clinical workflow and patient engagement platform, paired with the company's population health offering, will enable a "comprehensive go-to-market solution" to address the population health needs of healthcare provider and life science organizations. (Getty/Kritchanut)

Data analytics company Health Catalyst plans to acquire a patient engagement platform to boost its population health capabilities for healthcare organizations moving to value-based care.

The company will buy Twistle's equity interests for about $104.5 million, plus a potential earn-out of up to $65 million based on performance targets, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). 

Health Catalyst expects to pay $57.5 million in cash and $47 million in company stock as part of the deal, according to the SEC filing.

Albuquerque, New Mexico-based Twistle automates communication between care teams and patients and offers “turn-by-turn” guidance to patients as they navigate care journeys before, during and after a care episode. The company says it integrates sophisticated automation with multichannel communication, engaging patients through secure text messaging, interactive voice response, patient portals or a health system’s digital applications.

Health Catalyst anticipates that Twistle’s clinical workflow and patient engagement platform, paired with the company's population health offering, will enable a "comprehensive go-to-market solution" to address the population health needs of healthcare provider and life science organizations, according to company executives in a press release.

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The data analytics company has several acquisitions in the past year to beef up its capabilities. In July, Health Catalyst acquired health IT company Healthfinch for $40 million in cash and shares. Healthfinch provides clinical workflow optimization technology for physicians, including "Charlie," the company's practice automation platform that handles routine, repeatable and non-reimbursable "busywork" that burdens physicians.

In August, the company bought Vitalware, a provider of revenue workflow optimization and analytics SaaS technology solutions to healthcare organizations, for an aggregate purchase price of about $120 million, with an earn-out of an additional $30 million, according to an SEC filing.

Health Catalyst, which went public in 2019, reported revenue of $55.8 million in the first quarter of 2021, up 24% from $45 million in the same period a year ago. The company reported a $24 million operating loss in the first quarter, a deeper loss compared to a loss of $18 million in the first quarter of 2020.

Health Catalyst plans to pair its cloud-based data platform with Twistle’s automation to enable richer data-driven patient interaction. 

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“Twistle is a leading healthcare technology company committed to developing software that healthcare organizations and life science companies need to keep patients engaged in their healthcare,” said Dan Burton, CEO of Health Catalyst, in a statement. 

The most promising technology in healthcare is combining AI and data with "digital endpoints" for patient services to deliver value, according to Aaron Martin, managing general partner of Providence Ventures and chief digital officer of Providence.

The combination of Health Catalyst's data and analytics technology with Twistle's patient engagement platform will help accelerate innovation in personalizing outreach to patients, he said.

"Twistle creates endpoints that, in our experience, make it simple for us to interact asynchronously with patients in smarter ways, meeting them where they are digitally, and give our care teams the time to be even better at what they do best—delivering great care," Martin said.

The deal is expected to close in the third quarter of this year.