When Heal was founded in 2014, its goal was similar to that of many on-demand healthcare services, but with one difference: Instead of relying on video technology, Heal would bring back the house call. This has apparently intrigued investors, and the company announced today that it has raised a $26.9 million Series A round of funding. The latest infusion of capital was led by the Tull Investment Group.
Other participants include Breyer Capital, Qualcomm executive chairman Paul Jaobs, and Skydance Media chief executive David Ellison, along with early investors Hashtag One and Slow Ventures.
Heal said that the new investment will be used to grow the company and improve its back-end technology, while some funds will be allocated to marketing. Heal currently operates in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orange County, Silicon Valley, and San Diego, with more than 10,000 patients signed up. It also participates in medical networks like Blue Shield of California, Anthem Blue Cross of California, Cigna Healthcare, Aetna, and United Healthcare.
The impetus for the company came when Dr. Renee Dua’s son became sick and wasn’t able to see a doctor when he visited the emergency room. The family waited for hours, only to be told to go home “because it wasn’t that serious.” Dua felt that patients deserve to have a better way to see a doctor without waiting for hours or spending an entire day away from work. Heal was born to provide in-person doctors on demand.
“Sixty percent of Americans want a doctor who will make house calls,” the company told VentureBeat. “The healthcare system is broken — and no one is happy. Patients aren’t getting needed access to quality primary care, doctors aren’t practicing the quality medical care they’ve been trained to, hospitals aren’t living by measures consistent with what’s best for the patient, and $40 billion is spent annually on the overuse of U.S. emergency rooms.”
Although insurance covers Heal usage, the service charges $99 for those who aren’t in-network. Simply request a physician between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. when you’re sick or need a physical for yourself or a loved one. A qualified doctor, be it a physician, pediatrician, or psychologist, will come to your house when it’s convenient for you — all within an hour of being requested.
The marketplace is certainly filled with many of these Uber-like healthcare provider apps, such as Doctor on Demand (though it’s limited to video chats), Doctors Making Housecalls, Pager, Medicast, Go2Nurse, Curbside Care, and many others.
To date, Heal has raised more than $40 million in venture capital.