It can take weeks for a patient to get an appointment with a cardiologist. That delay is unacceptable for something like heart disease where early diagnosis is critical to managing a patient’s condition, Jeff Wessler, MD, Founder and CEO of Heartbeat Health, said.
Telemedicine can be part of the solution, according to Wessler. Heartbeat Health, for instance, delivers virtual-first cardiology services to patients. The platform connects patients directly with a cardiologist who uses-real time data to help patients manage their conditions. In this podcast with Oliver Wyman’s Ann Kaplan, Wessler details how specialty care providers can catch up to primary care when it comes to utilizing telehealth.
Wessler was the 2022 recipient of Oliver Wyman’s Tom Main Health Innovation Mentorship, a program that pairs innovators with senior members of Oliver Wyman’s Health and Life Sciences practice to help map out a growth strategy for their company. Wessler and Kaplan also discuss the challenges of launching a startup during a pandemic and what the current economic climate means for entrepreneurs.
“We set out on this journey … to bring a cardiology and cardiovascular care model out to the forefront of care so that it was accessible for people who needed it the most at the right time, much earlier in their disease journey.”
“There is a tendency when the economy is booming and venture capital money is booming to say, ‘Revenue at all costs, growth at all, costs grow, grow, grow.’ We've now all seen that should not be the headliner for any company that wants to really make it. The headline should be, ‘Let's build a healthy business that is achieving good in the healthcare space.’”
“Let the evidence drive what you're building … use those metrics that you track to improve your model and throw away what doesn't work.”
“I think provider autonomy is coming back. I think it's been gone for years, and as it comes back, their ability to choose what they want to do, how they want to do care will come back into the financial mix.”
“Primary care, urgent care (were) phase one of telemedicine. I think phase two, and probably the strongest use case, is specialty care.”