How Wellstar plans to invest $100M in digital health over next 10 years

Marietta, Ga.-based Wellstar Health System plans to invest $100 million over the next decade in digital health and other startups to help build the "innovations that our patients need the most," its digital chief told Becker's.

"When we look 10 years out, what we will have created here is an innovation company that's actively spawning off products, companies, ideas, and a fund alongside it helping to identify some of the best capabilities and emerging technology that need to be brought into the healthcare environment," said Hank Capps, MD, president of Catalyst by Wellstar and the health system's executive vice president and chief information and digital officer. "So it's really building out this flywheel that will forever allow us to innovate and to invest deeper in our communities."

Catalyst by Wellstar launched the $100 million fund May 18 with a concentration on five areas: customer experience; data, analytics and security; digital health; future of work; supply chain, logistics and mobility; and sustainability.

Dr. Capps said the focus is broad enough to encompass Catalyst by Wellstar's thesis that "not all healthcare problems are solved by healthcare solutions."

Wellstar also wants to be part of building those products. The health system, on the front lines, knows what the problems are. It also has the experience to help fix them, "so that at the end of the day, we end up with a solution that is much closer to what is actually needed by our patients and communities," Dr. Capps said.

The fund plans to make 50-plus investments directly and another 150 indirectly. Its first four direct investments were in maternal health remote patient monitoring company Marani Health, rapid resuscitation device maker 410 Medical, LED antimicrobial tech startup Vyv, and data software platform MetaCX. Wellstar is already piloting some of these technologies.

"The focus of building this portfolio is around delivering on that mission around how we're going to impact health equity along the way," Dr. Capps said, "and, in each of these partners, we can help drive further impact than they would have without us."

He said Catalyst by Wellstar also sees "sound vision" as another promising technology: using sound and artificial intelligence to monitor and identify potential deterioration in patients.

"We have a strong belief that in these tumultuous times for the industry, as we're moving from the traditional sick care to a world where we have to be creating well-being, innovation is going to be one of the paths to how we do that," Dr. Capps said.

Copyright © 2024 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars