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| January 28, 2020

Women’s Healthcare Provider Advantia Health Raises $45m to Expand Operations

Anca Spanu

Anca's career in journalism spans over 2 decades. She has served as staff writer, editor and deputy chief editor at... Anca's career in journalism spans over 2 decades. She has served as staff writer, editor and deputy chief editor at various media outlets all over the world. At Healthcare Weekly, Anca writes about current events, innovations in the healthcare space and events/ conferences with a focus on investing & startups.

Arlington-based Advantia Health, which is focused on women’s healthcare services provided via its online platform, announced on January 10th that it had received a $45 million investment from New York City-based investment management company BlueMountain Capital Management. Blue Mountain’s investment will help Advantia bring on more providers, sign on additional women-focused specialties, and expand its innovative technology offerings.

Women’s healthcare is also targeted by other companies

Advantia connects patients to OB-GYN, primary care, mental wellness, and specialist care providers.

“We started Advantia with one goal in mind – to transform health care for all women, creating a better experience from the ground up,” Advantia Founder and CEO Sean Glass said in a statement. “We are excited to partner with BlueMountain on our largest investment to date to accelerate our growth, allowing us to provide a higher standard of coordinated, convenient care to thousands more women.”

Advantia is not the only company that provides connective services.  Zava, for instance, is a digital healthcare provider that connects patients with an online doctor in minutes and allows medicines to be delivered directly to patients’ homes. Being part of a rapidly growing segment of healthcare, women’s healthcare has also been targeted by other companies. And there are serious reasons for this. Only the women-focused health products tech market is expected to reach sales of $50 billion in the U.S. by 2025, according to Absolute Markets Insights. Some firms are focused on specific areas, such as Genneve, which addresses menopause. Maven Clinic acts as a digital community and medical resource for women to get the care they need, anytime and anywhere at an affordable price. Maven Maternity works with employers to help them provide maternity leave for new mothers, as well as support during pregnancy and in the early stages after a child’s birth.

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Women usually make the medical decisions for the whole family 

Advantia Health was founded in 2014 by Glass and his father, an anesthesiologist. They wanted to provide a product focused on the doctor-patient relationship. They chose women’s health because women are often a family’s medical decision-makers, for themselves, their partners, their children, and their elderly family members.

Through its online platform, the company currently provides direct care by more than 200 providers across 60 locations serving over 430,000 patients at its OB-GYN and coordinated specialist offices. Advantia employs 200 physicians and allied health professionals and more than 200 lactation consultants, Glass said.

On the direct-care side, companies like Advantia are building out networks of women’s health clinics, ramping up the use of technology and promising a more comprehensive approach to care. One of the largest of such networks is Axia Women’s Health, which operates more than 100 clinics in Indiana, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Another firm, Women’s Health USA, backed by Sverica Capital Management offers practice management solutions for OB/GYNs who want to remain independent. Large health systems also have been consolidating OB/GYN and women’s health practices.

Providers in women’s health are competing not only to attract patients, but also to attract practitioners. The country is facing a shortage of up to 9,000 obstetricians and gynecologists this year, according to the American Journal of Managed Care, citing figures from the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

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Glass believes Advantia stands out because of its customer focus, interest in value-based care and proprietary technology. The company has also been investing in building relationships with residency programs and developing its recruiting platform, Glass added.

 

Advantia plans to use this investment to acquire more companies

The current new funding comes from BlueMountain Capital Management LLC, a subsidiary of insurer Assured Guaranty Ltd., which has experience in moving companies to value-based contracting, according to a statement by Glass.

BlueMountain was drawn to Advantia because of its focus on integrating care and technology.

“The market for comprehensive women’s healthcare continues to grow, and we believe that Advantia is at the center of the innovation and value that is defining the future of care,” said Ameya Agge, managing director at BlueMountain, in a statement.

The company will use the investment to hire more providers, introduce more women-focused specialties and create more technology offerings. Advantia plans to acquire more companies, grow its services and fund its flagship women’s health practice in D.C. This practice will integrate a portfolio of health services including mental wellness, OB-GYN and primary care for women.

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New members for the board of directors and ambitious plans

In conjunction with the funding, Jim Pieri, the head of private healthcare at BlueMountain, and Ameya Agge, managing director at BlueMountain, will join Advantia’s board of directors, which currently includes Deerfield Management Partner Leslie Henshaw, former CVS executive Mary Langowski, former Towers Watson COO Paul Daoust, and former McKinsey Managing Director and founder of McKinsey’s healthcare practice, Richard Foster.

This investment comes after Advantia made two acquisitions last year, which are now subsidiary companies under Advantia. The first one, Heartland Women’s Healthcare, is an OB-GYN practice with 25 locations across Missouri, southern Illinois and Washington state.  The second, Washington D.C.-based telehealth app company Pacify, provides post-partum support via telemedicine. Many women call on the service for lactation consulting.

“We use it with our practices to improve the experience and outcomes for our moms,” said Glass. Pacify’s services are also available to other customers, including insurers and health systems, he added. Heartland opened two OB-GYN medical buildings last year, one in Wentzville, Missouri, and another in Shilo, Illinois.

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In the fourth quarter of this year, according to Glass, Advantia plans to open its own branded clinic in Washington, DC. The retail-focused practice will offer OB/GYN care, primary care, behavioral health and wellness services, including nutrition and acupuncture.


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