In-home provider MedArrive announced Tuesday that it is partnering with virtual cardiology company Heartbeat Health to bring cardiovascular care into people’s homes.
Irving, Texas-based MedArrive serves patients in their homes and offers chronic condition management, transitional care, readmission prevention, urgent care, vaccinations, palliative care and other services. New York City-based Heartbeat Health allows people to speak with cardiologists virtually, receive treatment recommendations and access heart health devices for tracking purposes.
Through the partnership, MedArrive can connect the members of its payer customers — particularly Medicaid plans — to Heartbeat Health for cardiovascular support. MedArrive’s Medicaid partners include Centene subsidiary Superior HealthPlan, Health Net and Molina. If a MedArrive field provider determines that a patient is having cardiovascular problems or is at risk, the provider can set them up virtually with a Heartbeat Health cardiologist. Then, if a Heartbeat Health provider determines that the patient needs testing or IVs, MedArrive can provide that care to the patient in their home.
“You really need two parts: the presence at home who can identify what’s going on and help figure out when somebody needs escalated care. But then, in order to get the final piece of the pie, you need to actually intervene and provide that care,” said Dr. Jeff Wessler, Heartbeat Health CEO and cardiologist, in an interview.
The partnership is better than the alternative: sending patients to the hospital, added Dr. Rocky Samuel, chief clinical officer of MedArrive.
“Sending the patient to the hospital brings in new providers who don’t know the patient, disjointed care, poor communication, all to the detriment of the patient,” Samuel told MedCity News. “This [partnership] keeps that patient otherwise centered in their home with a team that’s working together.”
The business model of the partnership will be different depending on the payer customer, but Heartbeat and MedArrive will attempt to drive cost savings in patients’ care (like reducing emergency department visits) and then will share in those savings with the payer, Wessler said.
There is a serious shortage of cardiologists in the U.S., particularly for rural populations. So the need is high, especially for Medicaid members. More than a quarter of Medicaid beneficiaries have cardiovascular disease, and people on Medicaid also have high rates of risk factors for cardiovascular disease, like hypertension and high cholesterol. That’s why the companies are focusing on this population.
“We’re starting with the Medicaid population, which in many ways are the highest-needs, sickest patients where access is just a huge negative determinant to their health,” Wessler said. “Solving that access problem takes two things: It takes a group that can be in the home and it takes a provider group that can be available by televisits.”
Other digital companies for heart health include Ventricle Health, which offers virtual access to cardiologists and remote patient monitoring, and Hello Heart, which has an app to help patients track and understand their cardiovascular health.
The partnership between Heartbeat Health and MedArrive follows a series of recently announced partnerships between MedArrive and companies offering specialty care. The company began working with virtual maternal health platform Ouma in March, eye care company Spect in January and digital mental health platform Brave Health in December. In the future, the company is looking to create programs for palliative care and pediatric care, Samuel said.
Photo: Kiwis, Getty Images