Castlight Health bumps up its IPO price again

By: Brian Dolan | Mar 11, 2014        

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Castlight Mobile iOSCastlight Health, which is expected to debut on the New York Stock Exchange this coming Friday, just filed another update to its IPO filing with the SEC and now the company is looking to raise  looks to raise more than $191 million in total. The company raised the price of its IPO range to $13 to $15 a share up from its previous expected range of $9 to $11.

The company is offering 11.1 million shares in the IPO and its underwriters have the option to purchase an additional 1.65 million shares. Net proceeds from the IPO will total about $140.5 million according to the company’s filing. If the company’s underwriters opt to purchase additional shares, it could add another $21.7 million.

The stock will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “CSLT” as soon as Friday, March 14th. While Castlight recorded revenues of $1.9 million, $4.2 million and $13.0 million for the past three calendar years, it has posted respective net losses of $19.9 million, $35.0 million and $62.2 million.

Castlight Health works with health plans and other organizations to help self-insured employers offer their employees more transparent health care price and quality data in the form of online consumer tools and via mobile apps. Over the past two years Castlight has inked deals with more than 95 customers, primarily large self-insured employers, that include 24 Fortune 500 companies. At the end of 2013, Castlight had 106 signed customers, 48 of which had implemented its offering. At the end of 2012, it had 47 signed customers, and just 15 launched ones.

Among the many risks Castlight identified in its IPO filing was its limited number of customers that make up the majority of its revenue. Its deal with Wal-Mart and its affiliated health plans, for example, made up approximately 16 percent of Castlight’s total revenue last year.


UK begins assessment of Proteus Digital Health’s intelligent medicine platform

By: Brian Dolan | Mar 10, 2014        

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proteus-digital-health.top_Redwood City, California-based Proteus Digital Health announced plans this week to open its first international digital medicine manufacturing plant in the United Kingdom along with partnerships with various arms of the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) to validate its “smart pill” system. The NHS-affiliated groups that inked partnerships with Proteus this week include Eastern Academic Health Science Network (EAHSN), The Northern Health Science Alliance (NHSA) and Oxford University, Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust and Oxford Academic Health Science Network (OAHSN).

The company, once called Proteus Biomedical, expects the new manufacturing facility to employ about 200 in the UK.

Proteus Digital Health’s CEO Andrew Thompson told MobiHealthNews that he expects the partnership with NHS to lead to a wider rollout of its technology in the UK and worldwide: “A large public health system in Europe can’t just buy products,” Thompson said. “They issue a commission, which then validates and determines if the [healthcare] system should be buying products. Our anticipation is this is the beginning of a tendering and commissioning process for digital medicine.”

Thompson added that dozens of countries around the world are known to follow the UK’s lead when it comes to healthcare technology adoption. Success there could tee up the company’s global rollout.

Proteus’ frame for digital medicine includes three key components: Measurement, engagement, and alignment.  Keep reading>>

Azoi unveils thermometer-equipped, pulse-ox, and ECG-sensing smartphone case, Wello

By: Aditi Pai | Mar 10, 2014        

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WelloSan Francisco-based Azoi announced Wello, a smartphone case that measures a user’s vitals including blood pressure, electrocardiogram (ECG), heart rate, blood oxygen, and temperature.

“All too often, health problems go undetected until they are too late to address,” Azoi CEO and founder Hamish Patel said in a statement. “We believe that through improved self-awareness of key vitals, technology could very easily reduce the incidence and impact of a wide range of illnesses and diseases. Not only could this help ensure healthier, happier lives, but it could also ease the growing burden on healthcare services.”

To record their vitals, users place their fingers on four spots located on the smartphone case. After waiting a few seconds, the Wello companion app, available on Android and iOS devices, will show a readout of the user’s vitals information. The device has a battery life of two months if used every day.

The device is waiting for FDA clearance, but in the meantime users can preorder it for $199. The company plans to ship devices to the US after they receive FDA clearance, which they expect in fall 2014.

Azoi expects to ship the device to the UK, Singapore, Canada, Hong Kong, China, and India starting in the summer of 2014.

Although the app is available on iOS and Android platforms, the Wello case is only compatible with certain iPhones. Users must use Wello as a standalone device with all other phones.

While Azoi has only added Fitbit integration, it plans to partner with other digital health device companies in the future.

Azoi also mentions that it will offer an additional attachment to the phone to measure lung functions, although the company does not specify which lung functions it will measure.

AliveCor, which makes an iPhone case that can measure ECG, received FDA clearance in 2012 for its device. AliveCor also recently received FDA clearance for a “universal” ECG peripheral that works with most Android and iOS smartphones and tablets.

CareBeacon looks to be Moves for mPERS

By: Jonah Comstock | Mar 10, 2014        

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CareBeaconCareBeacon, a startup based in Los Angeles, is offering a low-cost mobile personal emergency response system (mPERS) in the form of an iPhone app. For $8 to $13 per month, users can download an app that will text and call friends and family members when it detects a fall.

Just as ProtoGeo’s Moves application demonstrated that activity tracking can be done on the smartphone itself, with no need for a dedicated device, CareBeacon is attempting the same feat for the mPERS market. CareBeacon uses a combination of the phone’s built in GPS and accelerometer to detect falls or extended periods of no movement.

When it detects a fall or an extended lack of movement, the app first displays an “Are You OK?” message and makes a sound. A louder alarm goes off 15 seconds later. If the user still doesn’t respond (or selects the “I need help” option), the app automated calls and texts predetermined friends and family members with the user’s GPS coordinates. Family and friends can then call emergency services.

The value proposition for a smartphone-only activity tracker is a little easier to sell than a smartphone-only mPERS because older people are still less likely to even have a smartphone, much less carry one around all the time. A survey from the Pew Internet and American Life Project this time last year put smartphone ownership at 13 percent for the 65 and over crowd. And the lack of a dedicated professional answering service might be a problem for some users — one’s friends and family won’t always pick up their phones.

On the other hand, the cost compares very favorably to device-based offerings or systems that employ a dedicated call center. While the app can be tried for free for two weeks, after that it costs $13 for a single month, $30 for three months, or $100 for a year. The discreet form factor might also be a plus for CareBeacon: there’s been a lot of talk in the aging in place space about the stigma attached to wearing an obvious pendant or bracelet — seniors generally don’t like solutions that feel like reminders of frailty.

CareBeacon was started by by Toby Northcote-Smith, an engineer with a background in the entertainment sector, and Robert Schoenburg, a 71-year-old software engineer. In a post on Medium about the founding of the company, Northcote-Smith outlined some of the problems CareBeacon is trying to solve.

“[Thirteen] million people over the age of 65 fall every year or one every 2.3 seconds,” he wrote. “The average person lays as long as 15 hours without someone knowing they have fallen. Among the elderly people studied [in a British Medical Journal study], only 20% of seniors pushed the panic button following a fall.”

At the moment, CareBeacon is offering a free iPhone case to every subscriber, and donating 5 percent of profits to charity groups focused on myelodysplastic syndrome, the condition of the friend who inspired the creation of the app. Northcote-Smith also outlined some future plans in his post.

“In January, we will release an update to the app including features such as sensing when the customer is driving,” he wrote. “We are building a messaging cycle that triggers if there is a car accident. So in a sense we are an iPhone-based OnStar.”

Update: Northcote-Smith told MobiHealthNews in an email that those motion-sensing features were released on time. Current future plans involve integrating Apple’s iBeacon into the app.

UC Davis taps for psychotic illness study

By: Aditi Pai | Mar 10, 2014        

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UCDavisGingerioUniversity of California Davis’ Early Diagnosis and Preventive Treatment (EDAPT) Clinic is launching a study in partnership with mobile health company The 12-month study follow 120 young people who are in the early stages of psychotic illness. Only youth who are enrolled in the UC Davis or City of Sacramento (EDAPT) clinics are eligible to participate.

UC Davis received $588,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to fund this study.

All of the children in the study will receive the app that passively collects data from users’ phones including information on their movement throughout the day, call patterns, and texting patterns. Users can also actively record information about how they are feeling each day.

If the app senses that something is off with the user, it will automatically notify the user’s family and physician. This system makes it easier for physicians to gain insights into how a patient is doing on a day-to-day basis and helps users recall information from the week as sessions.

“We are trying to identify the early warning signals that someone is struggling, so we can intervene earlier and hopefully prevent relapse,” Tara Niendam, assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and director of operations for the EDAPT Clinic said in a statement. “If an individual is having a bad week, we can reach out to them quickly, rather than waiting for them to call us or come in to the clinic for their next appointment.”

Niendam added that there were many warning signals that the study could identify. One metric might be whether forgetting a dose of medication could trigger an increase in symptoms or how the number of arguments a user has with family members affects his or her mood.

If study participants do not have smartphones, UC Davis will provide phones via a partnership with T-Mobile USA. has partnered with multiple other organizations in the past including Sanofi US DiabetesC3N’s IBD Pilot, and UCSF’s Health eHeart initiative.’s spokesperson Stephanie Wilson told MobiHealthNews in an email that the app is “currently part of the care solutions at Kaiser Permanente and Novant Health and contributes to core research at UCSF, Cincinnati Children’s, and MIT Medical. also recently launched Mood Matters, making the technology directly accessible to people living with depression.”

Physicians Interactive acquires the rest of its mobile medical app ad network JV

By: Brian Dolan | Mar 10, 2014        

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OmnioTomorrow Networks, a joint venture between mobile clinical resources company Physicians Interactive and New York City-based Remedy Systems, has been acquired in full by Physicians Interactive. Tomorrow Networks billed itself as a mobile advertising network that serve ads specifically targeted to healthcare providers and patients based on their specialties, conditions, and locations — among other contexts. Remedy Systems also quietly got absorbed by its parent company Remedy Partners last May.

“With 219 million smartphone subscriptions in the U.S. and more than 80 percent of physicians using mobile devices in the workplace, the need to reach people in highly targeted and engaging ways via their mobile devices is becoming increasingly critical as a distribution platform. Tomorrow Networks’ innovative, data-driven marketing solutions provide a significant competitive advantage for healthcare marketers looking to drive results,” Donato Tramuto, CEO and Chairman of Physicians Interactive, said in a statement about the acquisition. “We are very excited to add Tomorrow Networks to the Physicians Interactive portfolio and continue to build upon the stellar growth they’ve experienced to date expanding on their unique set of media products and services that have been resonating so well in the marketplace.”

When Tomorrow Networks launched in 2011, Remedy Systems provided the developer relations and technology behind the platform, while Physicians Interactive contributed its sales channels, ad operations management, relationships with ad agencies, and its flagship app, Skyscape, as a testbed.

“If you are a healthcare marketer trying to reach healthcare professionals on mobile [devices], there has not been a scalable way to do that with display advertising thus far,” Physicians Interactive President Sanjay Pingle told MobiHealthNews in 2011. “Sure, there have been messaging opportunities and sponsorship opportunities in medical apps, but you have not been able to target cardiologists in Texas, for example. That has not been available historically, but Tomorrow Networks makes that possible.”

Pingle contended at the time that other mobile ad networks might guess if a user was a medical professional based on the medical apps they were using, but Tomorrow Networks actually knows if the users are physicians or nurses and what their specialties are, the company said. At the time, Pingle said the network could, for example, target a nurse who treated patients with multiple sclerosis. Tomorrow also had capabilities for patient-facing mobile ads and it initially pitched it at hospitals and other care providers that wanted to reach a local audience of potential patients.

In its acquisition announcement this week, Physicians Interactive — which is now mostly owned by the Merck Global Health Innovation Fund — also revealed that Tomorrow Networks’ platform leverages local and regional health data sets, like disease and condition prevalence statistics, prescribing activity and formulary data to better target its clients’ ads at the right providers.