Announces growth of its medical image sharing network through new and expanded health system adoption across the country
Amherst, MA (September 24, 2015) - Long River Ventures announced today that lifeIMAGE, the medical image exchange platform that enables imaging data interoperability across healthcare networks, providers, patients and technology systems, received a $5 million strategic investment from Zaffre Investments, LLC, the investment arm of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA). This investment follows the $17.5 million round of financing lifeIMAGE received in May, which was led by Cambia Health Solutions, a family of health solutions companies and health insurance plans based in the Pacific Northwest, and supported by existing investors Cardinal Partners, Galen Partners and Long River Ventures, among others.
lifeIMAGE is an interoperable medical image sharing network that helps healthcare providers access their patients’ imaging records, regardless of where exams are performed or stored. This leads to faster, higher quality care, and lower rates of harmful and costly repeat testing. The lifeIMAGE network has been adopted by more than 120 multi-site health systems across the country, including the leading providers in Massachusetts, to improve care coordination for patient consultations, referrals and transfers.
“Technology has the ability to reduce unnecessary and duplicative testing and images, and will lead to long-term improvement in both care delivery and patient outcomes here in Massachusetts, and beyond,” said Tuoyo Louis, Managing Director, Zaffre Investments. “lifeIMAGE represents technology that we believe enables these goals and makes it easier for patients to navigate the health system.”
Zaffre Vice President, Steven J. Fox, will serve as board observer at lifeIMAGE, and will help identify opportunities to connect providers and patients in the BCBSMA network with their imaging studies via lifeIMAGE. He is a longtime champion and advocate of interoperable health IT and brings a strong payer and industry knowledge to lifeIMAGE.
Long River Ventures General Partner, Will Cowen, said that Long River Ventures, as the first institutional investor in the lifeIMAGE, “is gratified with the progress the company has made and enthusiastic about the value that Zaffre will add to the investor base and to the company’s ongoing expansion efforts.”
The lifeIMAGE platform supports large implementations at academic medical centers, pediatric facilities, certified trauma centers, oncology centers of excellence and imaging providers by combining local network image sharing with a medical-grade secure cloud. This allows multidisciplinary care teams to more easily access their patients’ imaging records, as well as share them with doctors and specialists outside a health system’s network. The platform is typically leveraged by clinicians in image-intensive disciplines such as orthopedics, neurology, cardiology, oncology, pulmonology, surgery, pediatrics, critical care, radiology and others.
“Health providers and health plans are both seeing significant value associated with image sharing,” said Hamid Tabatabaie, lifeIMAGE CEO and co-founder. “Physicians need to be made aware of when their patients’ imaging tests become available, even when they are performed outside their health system. We continue to build out and enhance this intelligent, interoperable health data network and are excited to expand our strategic partnerships with industry leaders who share in our vision.”
More users, providers sign on
In addition to this funding news, lifeIMAGE also released new network statistics and details on customer momentum.
New organizations on the lifeIMAGE customer roster include Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (Los Angeles), Baptist Health Jacksonville (FL), Children’s Hospital of Orange County, City of Hope Cancer Center (Duarte, CA), Emory Healthcare (Atlanta), Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin (Wauwatosa), North Mississippi Medical Center (Tupelo) and Valley Children’s Hospital (Madera, CA).
Additionally, numerous existing customers recently expanded their lifeIMAGE implementations, such as Tufts Medical Center (Boston) and University Health System (San Antonio, Texas), with some including EHR integrations that make medical imaging studies viewable from inside the digital patient record. In total, nearly 450 hospitals now use lifeIMAGE for medical imaging across their campuses. Another 700 hospitals have joined the network to exchange those images with other members, for a combined total that exceeds 1,100, or nearly one in five registered U.S. hospitals. The 90,000 lifeIMAGE clinical users represent all 50 U.S. states and more than 90 countries. In total, healthcare providers so far have shared more than two billion medical images through the lifeIMAGE network.
lifeIMAGE provides a medical image exchange platform that is deployed at hundreds of leading healthcare organizations to facilitate the secure, e-sharing of medical imaging information among hospitals, radiology groups, physicians and patients. Our services are helping providers improve the quality and timeliness of care, expand referral business, and eliminate wasteful spending.
About Zaffre Investments
Zaffre Investments, LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts that is committed to adding value through investments in new products, services and technologies that aim to improve the way healthcare is delivered and received. Zaffre focuses on companies across the healthcare landscape, with a primary focus on ACOs, consumer solutions, health information technology, and behavioral health. The firm is stage agnostic, considering a company’s financial and market positions, capabilities, and core values, as well as their missions and visions for the future. Zaffre employs a true partnership model for its portfolio companies, providing strategic direction, business support, industry connections and more.
About Long River Ventures
Long River Ventures invests in early growth stage IT and healthcare companies throughout the northeast United States. Formed by a group of experienced entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, Long River is designed and structured to invest smaller amounts of capital with typical initial investments of $500,000 to $1 million. Long River Ventures has offices in Amherst and Boston and is currently investing from its third fund. For more information, visit the Long River website.
Will Cowen, Managing Partner, Long River Ventures