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The Launch Place announced today that it is investing $250,000 in iScribes to further develop its operational capacity and technology for delivering virtual scribe services to healthcare providers across the United States. iScribes is a HIPAA-compliant mobile application and virtual medical scribing service. Healthcare providers record patient encounters using the mobile application, and virtual scribes listen to patient encounters, write medical documentation, and put it in the electronic medical record (EMR) for healthcare providers, saving doctors hundreds of hours per year of clerical work.
The adoption of EMRs is an important step in the modernization of the US healthcare system, but it has created significant new challenges for providers. It is estimated that physicians now spend 40% of their time documenting patient encounters in EMRs, which directly reduces time available for patient care. EMRs have also impeded the doctor-patient relationship, as many physicians now conduct exams while facing a computer instead of their patients.
"iScribes exists to make healthcare functional and efficient," said Dr. Jared Pelo, Co-founder and CEO of iScribes. “Virtual medical scribes enable providers to conduct patient encounters naturally and efficiently with exceptionally high-quality documentation.,” said Dr. Pelo. Unlike with medical transcription, no dictation is required and scribes complete documentation directly in the provider’s EMR.
"The problem of time-consuming documentation for every patient office visit has been reduced," says Dr. John Mahoney, Orthopedic Surgeon with Spectrum Medical in Danville, who has used iScribes since October of last year. “I can focus more time on my patients instead of spending long hours at a computer or working with dictation services,” said Dr. Mahoney.
When a company is raising a round of funding, oftentimes multiple investors participate in the round. The Launch Place led the syndication of this deal where Triangle Angel Partners II, LLC (TAP II), an angel investment fund based in the Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, co-invested for a total of $410,000 investment. This investment marks how two regions can work together and enable an early-stage company to grow and expand operations.
“The membership of TAP II found the combination of iScribes' management team and application of technology to the healthcare services sector a compelling reason to make iScribes the 6th portfolio company” said Stephen Clossick, TAP II Fund Manager.
“TAP II is equally pleased with its newly strengthened relationship with The Launch Place, as this co-investment has shown how well the two organizations can work together to provide early stage funds to regional start-ups,” said Clossick.
“We have had a strong relationship with TAP for multiple years and look forward to continuing our work together,” said Eva Doss, The Launch Place President & CEO. “iScribes’ use of technology to improve a health provider’s productivity and accuracy as well as overall patient satisfaction has shown tremendous traction in the last year by the number of customers that have selected to use iScribes for their medical documentation,” said Doss.
iScribes began out of the frustration of co-founder, Dr. Jared Pelo. "Once I started practicing medicine, I quickly saw how burdensome documentation had become. Doctors were burning out. Counterintuitively, technology didn't seem to help. In fact, the adoption of widespread electronic medical records just made matters worse for overworked doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants."
Then Jared found something that fixed the problem. "My first medical scribe was a breath of fresh air. I knew every doctor should have one. But also knew it would take technology that worked seamlessly to make scribing accessible," said Dr. Pelo.
Customers believe in this combination of technology and service. Up to this point, many of the same healthcare providers who use iScribes have funded the early stages of the company. "We know the validation that comes with customers who believe in your product so much that they invest," said Christopher McGuire, Co-founder and Head of Sales at iScribes.
"Now we are excited to work with The Launch Place to move us into our next phase of development. With new funds, we will optimize our service and infrastructure for stable growth, while investing in technology that continues to delight our customers and move scribing forward. We especially look forward to the benefits of partnering with an organization with such advising and mentoring expertise here in our backyard," said McGuire.
The Launch Place
The Launch Place, from a $10 million grant received from the Danville Regional Foundation in 2012, assists with entrepreneurship and business development, and job creation and retention through its business consulting, mentoring and training, residential and office subsidies, and two seed investment funds in the Dan River region of Virginia.
The iScribes virtual scribe service relieves providers of the documentation burden using technology that fits seamlessly into physician workflows and highly-trained scribes based in the United States. iScribes is HIPAA-compliant and tailored to the needs of providers end-to-end. Providers record patient encounters using a mobile application. Unlike transcription, no dictation is required, and providers can interact with patients naturally. Virtual scribes write and submit documentation directly into the electronic medical record (EMR). Doctors approve the notes and go home on time.