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Is data integration broken?
Sansoro Health, as the story goes, was launched during a dinner between friends. David Levin, M.D., the former chief medical information officer at Cleveland Clinic, was catching up with a friend about analytics and electronic health records (EHRs). That friend happened to be the CEO of a company that had just set aside a “significant amount of funding” for an EHR data integration project.
The rest, as the cliché goes, was history. Established in 2014, Sansoro Health has spent its life trying to fix what’s broken in health IT. For the startup, of which Levin is the chief medical officer, that mostly means interoperability — the seamless and secure exchange of medical data between EHR systems and stakeholders. True to that first conversation, it’s all about data integration.
It’s a mission that has earned the company attention and venture capital. In fact, Sansoro Health today announced $8 million in Series B funding, a round led by LRVHealth, with help from returning supporters Bain Capital Ventures and Healthy Ventures. The cash injection boosts Sansoro’s war chest to $14.5 million, in a move that it says will fortify its software — and its place in the market.
And if that does indeed occur, Sansoro and its investors hope the effect will be improved data access across healthcare.
“Sharing data between disparate EHR systems remains a major challenge — one that I’ve seen firsthand and that strategic investors in our collaborative investing platform deal with every day,” Keith J. Figlioli, general partner at LRVHealth and the newest member of Sansoro’s board of directors, said in a statement. “When providers, payers and patients are able to move and integrate data across many sources, healthcare technology becomes infinitely more valuable for everyone, and that’s why we invested in Sansoro Health.”
The investment will fuel the adoption and continued development of the company’s Emissary software platform, a tool that brings digital health apps into the EHR. Emissary’s universal application programming interface (API) is meant to free developers from the daily grind of integration so that they may tackle more meaningful projects, empowering telemedicine, precision medicine and more.
Government agencies, tech leaders and other innovators have long called for this type of arrangement, which could help clinicians transform data into actionable insights.
The idea is simple: EHR adoption is all but finished. The government has spent tens of billions of dollars on provider incentives. Health systems and physicians have taken the offer. But healthcare has yet to reap the rewards.
“Current data integration solutions are broken,” said Yumin Choi, managing director of Bain Capital Ventures and a Sansoro board member. “They’re slow, limited in scope and challenging to manage.”
And that’s why investors gave Sansoro Health the money: They think the startup could play a role in healthcare’s data efforts of tomorrow, securing it a place in an increasingly lucrative market.
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