Wednesday , December 1 2021

Truveta is making progress towards building a living medical portrait of America

Truveta wants to collect privacy-safe medical data from around the United States on a regular basis, making it available for researchers to sift and parse. The company is making real progress toward that goal in product terms, and this morning said it raised another $100 million, giving it a capital base of around $200 million in total.

But the financial aspect, and the fact that Truveta has secured more partners in the medical world to supply it with information, are ancillary to the fact that the startup has started to make its platform available to external parties.

Truveta partners with around 20 medical providers, aggregating regular de-identified data from 42 American states and myriad patients into its collection. From there it has built a software service that allows researchers and other users to ask questions of the collected data. TechCrunch was given a tour of the Truveta product, which, as chart nerds, we liked.

But frankly, your local technology writer is not precisely the Truveta end user. Instead, the product is aimed at individuals with their hands in the public health domain. To that end, the company’s product lets researchers include and exclude elements of the population, before dropping the user into a Jupyter Notebook, from where they can build a dashboard with data that updates daily.

Truveta has eyes on 16% of all clinical care in the United States, per CEO Terry Myerson, who formerly worked with Microsoft.

The company shared a grip of COVID-19-related material this morning that it has gleaned from its own product. It turns out that “adverse events” happen to fewer than 1% of folks with a full COVID-19 vaccine, with Moderna patients showing 40% more than those who received Pfizer. Given that I am a Moderna Man and my spouse is Team Pfizer, I was amused by that latter stat. Perhaps I’ll mix-and-match my booster?

Truveta is more interesting for its long-term potential than for what it has managed to learn thus far, in my view. It’s good news for our country that the company is starting to open up access to external parties, and has a product that can ingest mountains of data and share it in a privacy-safe manner. Our healthcare system is expensive, siloed, antiquated and rife with inefficiencies. Truveta could make things a bit more open and, if we are lucky, clear.

What will prove interesting from this juncture is how Truveta converts itself from an interesting — and now operating — project into a business. It has a pretty firm anti-advertising stance, saying in its self-description that its service is “licensed for ethical medical research [and] not to target advertising to patients or physicians.” Fair enough, but do researchers have the coin to make the project work? Perhaps Truveta will sell its service back to its data providers, each contributing both data and regular fees to the company?

Truveta notes in its self-produced bio that it pays taxes. Hence, it isn’t a nonprofit. That means at least an attempt at future profitability, which will keep our business model questions at the front of our minds. But with $100 million in new capital, Truveta is hardly about to run short on cash.

All told, Truveta has rapidly scaled its partner base and tech stack to the point of market viability. Let’s see what demand is attracted, and how quickly positive health and business outcomes can be ascertained.

This Article was first published on https://techcrunch.com/

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