Brookfield-based healthtech startup EmOpti Inc. has raised a $1.35 million funding round led by individual investor Kevin O’Brien. O'Brien is managing director at New York private equity firm CCMP Capital, which is not involved in the deal.
[caption id="attachment_369453" align="alignright" width="300"] Ed Barthell[/caption]
Founded in 2014, EmOpti created a software platform that reduces patient wait times at emergency rooms and arranges completion of preliminary tests before the patient sees a doctor in person. It has previously raised $5.5 million.
The new funding round closed Dec. 10. Also investing in this second tranche of EmOpti’s series AB round were Brookfield-based Golden Angels Investors LLC and Milwaukee- and Downers Grove, Illinois-based Advocate Aurora Health Care Inc., said Dr. Ed Barthell, founder and chief executive officer of EmOpti.
Barthell plans to use the funds to ramp up EmOpti’s marketing and sales efforts. The startup has customer hospitals across the country.
“We continue to have really good outcomes from our early customers and it’s just trying to get the word out,” he said. “The evidence is building that we can have a positive impact on patient flow.”
While there are competitors in the telehealth space, Barthell said EmOpti is one of the few focused on business-to-business services, helping with interfacility and intrafacility consultations to improve health care systems’ patient flow on-site.
The funding round will also help EmOpti explore other uses for its technology beyond emergency department flow, Barthell said. Among the possibilities are mental health consultations and language interpreter services.
EmOpti currently has 11 employees, with plans to grow.
“We’ll be doing some additional hiring over the course of the year as we continue to ramp up sales,” Barthell said.
Advocate Aurora predecessor Aurora Health Care Inc. has invested a total of $1 million in two previous EmOpti rounds, and has worked closely with the company to co-develop its technology platform and pilot it at Aurora hospitals. Currently, EmOpti is in use at Aurora’s West Allis, Kenosha and Sinai hospitals, and it is being introduced at several others, said Mike Rodgers, vice president of commercial innovation at Advocate Aurora Health.
“They’re doing extremely well, we’re really excited about it and we’re rolling them out to a lot of our hospitals,” Rodgers said. “We’re in active conversations with them on a regular basis. We’re always looking at what additional problems could they help to find solutions to as we go forward.”
At emergency rooms that have EmOpti in place, a patient would check in with a nurse to begin the visit, but then could be seen by a doctor virtually using its telehealth service. Since it was implemented, Aurora has gone from a rate of seven to nine patients per emergency room doctor per hour, to 20-plus patients per doctor per hour, Rodgers said.
“They provide a really cool solution when you come in the emergency department to see a doctor within a certain period of time,” he said. “People get really excited because if you’ve ever gone into an emergency department before, sometimes you have to wait. This is a way to see a doctor really quick.”