Changes in legislation, such as the Affordable Care Act and even proposed legislation that would change the way hospitals offer information to patients, are forcing the medical world to become more comfortable with both technology and data. And Aidin, a New York-based startup hoping to bring data into hospitals, thinks that now is the right time to start growing.
Aidin has raised $1.1 million in first-round funding from General Catalyst Partners, the HLM Partnership Fund for New York City and NYC Based Healthcare Angels on top of an earlier $600,000 seed round. It has signed up the Western Maryland Healthcare System as a client, which expects the software to help its hospital social workers tasked with discharging patients cut about 65 percent of the time they spend on administrative tasks.
When an elderly patient leaving a hospital is too sick to go home and needs further care, oftentimes the patient and her family are given a list of nursing homes with just a phone number and address. It can take a social worker half an afternoon of calling around to even compile that list.
People generally choose a location closest to their house as opposed to the facility that has the most experience dealing with whatever problem the patient has, or one with good reviews. And 25 percent of the time they end up back in the hospital, unhappy with the facility they chose.
Mike Galbo, a co-founder of Aidin, thought this was ridiculous, and now that Medicare charges hospitals penalties if their re-admittance rate of patients gets too high, hospitals are also realizing that their old way is crazy. That’s where Aidin comes in. The software takes data from Medicare about how different facilities do managing different illnesses and also follows up with patients or their families to get feedback on the particular location.
That information and other data gets compiled into a Yelp-style ranking of assisted-living care facilities that social workers now give patients. The software also ties the nursing home providers into the hospital’s network, so now the social worker can track availability online instead of via phone calls or faxes. Hospitals using Aidin as part of a pilot study saw their readmission rates drop between 3 and 17 percent, according to the company.
This is big data (taking a variety of different data sets and putting them together) but it’s not rocket science. These sorts of startups aren’t so much about the tech as applying information we already have in ways that deliver true insights. As more government data sets open up and more industries embrace new technology, hopefully we’ll see more industries and larger players embrace data; not just because it’s big, but to actually provide real insights in a easy-to-understand fashion at the point they are needed.