23 Jan

A Random Encounter for Digital Therapeutics

HealthBeacon President of Partnerships, Dave Shanahan was part of the HealthBeacon team that participated in the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco in mid-January. This event brought together biopharmaceutical industry executives and digital therapeutic innovators from all over the world, and led to an educational encounter between Dave and Rob Wright, Chief Editor of Life Science Leader online magazine.

Wright, wrote about the encounter as part of a blog series on the conference entitled “Connectivity- The Beauty of JPM and BTS”. He writes, “one of the more intriguing experiences took place at the Biotech Showcase. Grabbing a quick breakfast, I sit down at a table occupied by Dave Shanahan, president of partnerships for HealthBeacon, a medication-adherence technology company based in Dublin, Ireland. Shanahan gets me up to speed on the company’s first product, a smart sharps bin, as well as their current project, a tool to help automate medication compliance. According to Shanahan, there are over two billion cases of poor medication adherence each year, which costs patients and societies about $290 billion — annually! “The most expensive medication is the one not taken,” he notes. With the push by insurance companies and governments to provide better patient outcomes, it seems HealthBeacon has landed on some simple solutions that might help.”

Events like the JP Morgan conference bring together influential thought leaders from all over the world. Meetings of these industry leaders will help drive real world evidence of connected medicine and redefine the future of Digital Therapeutics.

Read the full article

 

24 Oct

Funding and Scaling Series

HealthBeacon CEO, Jim Joyce participated in a “fire side chat” at an investment event for the “Funding and Scaling Series” in Dublin on Tuesday. The event is being hosted by Dublin Business Innovation Centre (Dublin BIC) which provides business consultancy services to early stage, high potential start-ups.

As a serial entrepreneur, Jim was asked to present to the crowd of 300-400 attendees comprised of entrepreneurs, investors and business leaders due to his success in raising funds as HealthBeacon has successfully completed two rounds of funding in the last three years and will be seeking a third round of funding in the coming months.

The event is part of the Dublin BIC Funding and Scaling series, a quarterly breakfast briefing, which was introduced by Dublin BIC in November last year. These briefings offer entrepreneurs the opportunity to explore different approaches to fundraising and scaling for start-ups. It involves hearing the perspectives of investors and learning from those that have successfully funding and scaled their business.

In addition to the presentation regarding his own success, from start-up to scale-up, Jim will join a panel of entrepreneurial peers to answer questions that prepare start-ups for potential investment.

20 Oct

HealthBeacon builds bridges into Latin American market

Over the next few quarters, HealthBeacon will embark on several strategic initiatives to expand our global influence and educate new markets about our award-winning technology. As part of HealthBeacon’s global growth initiatives, we were proud to welcome several key influencers from Latin America into the HealthBeacon Dublin headquarters.  The HealthBeacon team was joined by Doctor Valéria Camargo, Medical Director of Auditing, OMINT, Mr. Márcio do Lago, Executive Director, ABCIS (Brazilian Association of CIOs) and Mr. Aimar Tarrufi, Senior Claims Director, SUL AMERICA. Also joining the team in Dublin was our LATAM manager, Andrea Rangel who is based in our São Paulo facility.

The delegates took part in a workshop to learn about the HealthBeacon technology and the potential for connected medicine in Latin America. The LATAM market has a large patient base where Brazil alone could serve millions of patients afflicted with diseases where biologic treatments are used. The workshop participants brought a global perspective for medical technology, healthcare, pharmaceutical, health insurers and information technology to discuss the future of connected medicine and digital therapies. Furthermore, these senior decision makers have a particular expertise in Brazil in health insurance and the use of health information technology to improve the support of patients in the community. The Brazilian health insurance market is one of the most dynamic in the adoption of new technologies to improve therapeutic outcomes. Brazil’s population is spread over one of the world’s largest land masses and supporting patients who are far away from hospital is a key priority in improving outcomes of community health.

In addition to the private workshop at HealthBeacon, the delegates participated in the Enterprise Ireland event “Med in Ireland” which is Ireland’s largest medical technologies event and a high-profile showcase for the entire spectrum of the Irish medical technologies sector.

04 Jul

Top 10: Why launching your global start up in Ireland makes sense

Written By Jim Joyce

13 years ago I moved from the US to Ireland and not too soon after arriving in Dublin, I left my safe job in the pharmaceutical industry to begin my career as an Irish entrepreneur.

With a few successes and a few stumbles under my belt, here are my top ten reasons why launching your global start-up in Ireland makes sense.

Top Ten Reasons to Launch your Global Start-up in Ireland

  1. Ireland is a small market that is open culturally. You can access key decision makers and influencers early in your company development.
  2. Enterprise Ireland will look to match your first €250,000 in funding if you become a qualified HPSU (High Potential Start Up).
  3. Any Irish Investor will be able to write off up to 40% of their investment in your start up against their income tax.
  4. Irish are dreamers and aspirational at their core and have a really good sense of humour. They won’t let you take yourself too seriously, which is a great stress relief.
  5. The market is small, so you will be forced to go international.
  6. The Irish have lots of American cousins and the Irish brand is familiar and welcome in the US. The connections to help export your product to the US are solid.
  7. Irish won’t tend to say “no”, they may run when they see you and shake their head as you leave, but you won’t get many direct “no’s”. New ideas need oxygen and a bit of delusion in their early days.
  8. Competition is a little lighter in a few niches so you have more time and space to get the product right.
  9. Ryanair has cheap flights to Europe and Aer Lingus has direct flights to USA.
  10. When you get traction the Irish Prime Minister (Taoiseach) may personally get involved in getting the word out about your company, and will certainly be in your corner.

Disclaimer: These opinions are my own and I reserve the right to change them and/or keep them. They are purposefully and provocatively positive in their nature.

13 Apr

HealthBeacon, making it easier…

HealthBeacon, making it easier to do the right thing: The Screenplay

e-Patient Dave gives a few remarks for the HealthBeacon ribbon cutting.

On a snowy street in South Boston a man in a dark blue parka is rushing to his next appointment and looking for an unfamiliar building, where he is borrowing a conference room for a quickly approaching call. Suddenly he hears his name and turns to see a man in a suit, no winter jacket, chasing him down the icy street.

Jim Joyce: Dave, hey! You’re e-Patient Dave, right?

(Jim sticks his hand out and shakes Dave’s hand)

e-Patient Dave de Bronkart: Yes, I am. And you are?

JJ: Jim Joyce, HealthBeacon, I understand you are heading to our new office for your next appointment.

DDB: Oh yes, thank you so much for hosting me, I really look forward to learning more about what you’re working on.

JJ: Do you have a few minutes? I would love to buy you a cup of coffee.

DDB: Well, I’ve got a conference call shortly, but I can give you a few minutes.

JJ: Great, well we won’t keep you too long. Come on in and join us.

e-Patient Dave working in the new HealthBeacon conference room.

After a quick coffee, Dave sets out for Irish based company HealthBeacon’s new Boston office, introduces himself briefly to the team, gets set up in the conference room and completes his conference call.

Jim has returned to the office and is working with his team to prepare for the ribbon cutting event taking place shortly.

Dave takes a few moments to look around the office and waits for Jim to wrap up.

DDB: So tell me, Mr. Joyce… what is it you do here?

JJ: Excellent question. We are a medical adherence technology company. We have created a smart sharps bin that helps people manage their medications.

DDB: Okay, and how does it do that?

HealthBeacon CEO Jim Joyce.

JJ: Well, we recognize that nowadays patients have access to highly effective medications to treat once debilitating conditions. In the past, many of these treatments required a patient to go to a hospital, but with advancements in treatments these medications can now be taken in the comfort of a person’s home. Unfortunately, that can also mean they feel a bit isolated by their illness, so we created a way to help them feel more connected, and that helps them adhere better to their treatment.

DDB: Adhere?  Don’t you mean achieve?

JJ: How so?

E-Patient Dave

DDB: Well, to me, the patient is achieving the goals that they set for themselves, with their clinicians, as part of their treatment plan. Where you say adherence, or compliance I would say that a patient is being successful and managing their own medical achievements, after all, as a champion of their own health they have the most motivation to use the treatments they think will help.

JJ: Very good point, from the patient’s point of view, that would be their motivation.

DDB: So, how do you help a patient achieve success?

JJ: Well with that approach in mind, I would say we empower patients to take control of their medication, in their own home. We connect them to their own success by connecting their medicine, to their own network, to help them reach their health goals by providing something like a patient success technology kit.

DDB: Now, that’s an idea I can get behind. You’re helping me achieve the plan to reach my chosen health goals.

JJ: Exactly, we wanted to create a beacon of health, not of illness. That’s why we designed something advanced and yet simple, technological and still friendly.

DDB: That’s good because the whole shift that’s happening in the culture of healthcare is from patient as recipient of wisdom from above, to patient as the source of the need, and as an activated partner who gets better autonomy and better usability from a product like this, that’s versatile enough to fit into their life in a variety of ways.

JJ: Absolutely, the previous versions of a home sharps bins, were never really designed for the comfort and benefit of the patient. Thank you for challenging me to really explain our benefits from the patient’s perspective.

DDB: Absolutely, it’s what I do.

JJ: How would you feel about cutting the ribbon for our grand opening?

DDB: I’d be happy to!

They walk to the front of the crowd, Jim hands Dave the giant scissors.

DDB: (To audience) In my book “Let Patients Help” one of my favourite aphorisms for improving healthcare is “Make it easy to do the right thing.”  And to me that’s what HealthBeacon is designed to do: my clinician and I have agreed on a therapeutic goal, and HealthBeacon intends to make it easier to do that, in a way that fits into my life, a way that works for me.

Congratulations on the new office, and welcome to the USA!

Ribbon gets cut, office is open.

e-Patient Dave cuts the ribbon to open the new HealthBeacon office in Boston.

Cancer survivor “e‑Patient Dave” is an international keynote speaker, author, lecturer, and business advisor lecturer who coaches audiences and companies on transforming healthcare from the patient’s perspective.  http://www.epatientdave.com/about-dave
21 Mar

HealthBeacon Grand Opening USA

HealthBeacon Ribbon CuttingBoston, Mass., March, 17, 2017–Medical technology is growing in Boston and for good reason:

Connected medicine is revolutionizing medication adherence. Jim Joyce, creator of the HealthBeacon, believes that connecting real life data about a patient’s behaviour can provide powerful clinical insights and targeted interventions to improve treatment and outcomes. Enter a smart tool for managing medication, the flagship product: The HeathBeacon.

HealthBeacon officially opened their third office at 423 W. Broadway in South Boston, MA on Thursday, March 16th, 2017.  The ceremonial ribbon cutting was performed by Irish Minister Katherine Zappone TD, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, and accompanied by Fionnuala Quinlan, Consulate General and her team.  This expansion will allow for a North American hub that delivers Irish technology, manufactured in Dublin and exporting it to the world. What better way to drive medical technology growth and development between countries than to have an Irish-American serial entrepreneur leading the way?

Born and raised in Boston, MA, Joyce saw the opportunity that Dublin provides innovative start-up companies. After working several years for a multinational, Joyce decided to venture out on his own and made his first foray into entrepreneurship. His first company, Point of Care, was established in Dublin with the goal of transforming the way patients experience medical treatments in their community. Joyce explains that it was this venture that gave him the idea for the HealthBeacon. He explains “I was originally trying to figure out a way to manage waste disposal and costs, and fumbled my way to an idea that can fundamentally change the pharmaceutical industry.”

HealthBeacon’s digital platform exploits the increased trend in healthcare to connect devices and data for better health delivery. Co- Founder of HealthBeacon, Kieran Daly explains “At HealthBeacon we believe that technology should be near invisible and sophistication should be masked by simplicity. When we thought about how to develop our medical adherence tools we wanted to make sure that the patient experience was frictionless but the impact was meaningful.” It is this seamless connectivity that is driving the internet of things (IoT) trend, and will drive fast adoption and scaling of the platform, especially as it supports lower cost health delivery.

The New England Healthcare Institute estimates that 290 billion dollars is spent each year because of poor medication adherence. Evidence also suggests that patients on average comply with their medication only 52% of the time without digital intervention. Recent studies show that those patients using digital intervention are compliant 77% of the time. We believe that it is this evidence that has led to HealthBeacon’s being embraced by both clinicians and patients.

According to Jim Joyce, “This is the perfect location for an Irish company to launch into the US market. Our Boston team will provide critical technical development and support to pharmaceutical and biotech companies looking to digitally connect their medicines.”

Tim Connelly, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, a public economic development agency which promotes the digital health sector across Massachusetts, highlighted the importance of HealthBeacon’s addition to Boston.

“Massachusetts is home to more than 350 digital health organizations working at the intersection of health care and technology,” stated Connelly. “HealthBeacon will find a welcome community of innovators and entrepreneurs, both in healthcare and technology, who can help the company develop, market, and grow their innovative products. As a leading state in healthcare policy, we welcome with open arms companies like HealthBeacon that are working to enhance the delivery of care and ultimately to better the lives of patients.”

23 Feb

Executive Spotlight- Kyle Bolton

Kyle at HealthBeaconHere at HealthBeacon, we have been fortunate to recruit top talent from around the world. With the Grand Opening of our new office in Montreal, Canada, this is the perfect opportunity to highlight our new Design Director and Head of our new Canadian office, Kyle Bolton in his own words…

Growing up in London Ontario Canada, I was always drawn to computers and loved staying up late into the night creating designs, videos, animations, posters and websites.

I’ll never forget my first website gig. I was probably 13 or 14; it was for a country cabin & campground. I wasn’t old enough to drive, so my mum drove me out to the meeting, down an old dusty road. She waited in the car while I went in, stumbling over my words to sell them on the idea of a website. After what seemed like an eternity, we shook hands, and they cut me a cheque for $250. I walked out of there beaming and went back down that road victorious.  My fate was sealed.

I received a Bachelor of Design degree (BDes) from York University and Sheridan College in Toronto, Canada. My focus was in motion graphics, and after graduation, I had the opportunity to work under Kyle Cooper at Prologue Films in California. After a brief stint in California, I moved on to (literally) greener pastures, Dublin, Ireland.

In 2007, I moved to Dublin to help co-found Ultrasound Dimensions, medical and maternity ultrasound centre. From the outside, it may seem unusual, going from motion graphics to healthcare but, at its core, design is about problem-solving. So, I approached the challenge of starting a medical centre with that lens, a “design thinking” lens. Design thinking is a buzz word now, but back in 2007, no one was talking about it in healthcare. We wanted to design a better patient experience than what was currently out there, and design thinking at our foundation helped us do that.

Tell us a little bit about your family.

I come from a family of 6 children, three boys and three girls. I’m in the middle. We all caught the travelling bug, and now all live in different cities from Calgary, Bergen, Montreal, Tokyo, London UK, Toronto and Dublin! I always have a good excuse to travel.

Tell us something about yourself that would surprise us.

I became an Irish citizen in 2016 and now that I’m in Montreal, I’m studying French.

What brought you to HealthBeacon?

A simple twist of fate.  In 2007, I was reading the Irish Times and saw an article about this Bostonian, Jim Joyce, starting a patient support company in Ireland, Point of Care. I was doing something similar, setting up a diagnostic imaging centre so thought I’d reach out, have a coffee and learn about what he was doing and see if I could add value to what he was doing and vice versa.

I’d run into Jim around town and occasionally reach out to bounce ideas off him. Sometime in late 2015, I rang him for some advice, and he asked me to come check out this new company he was working on, HealthBeacon.  I went out to the Dublin office, hammers banging in the background, dust still in the air, and met with him and Kieran Daly. They showed me the HealthBeacon IoT device, shared their vision for the company, the industry and the impact it could have on patients. I was sold. I loved their vision. They needed some design thinking applied to what they were doing so I went off to mock up some designs. A few weeks later I came back with a software and design strategy, they liked it and with a handshake deal, we agreed to a three-month contract. 12 months later, I’m still here!

If you could switch your job with anyone else within HealthBeacon whose job would you want?

I feel my current role is a perfect fit for me but If I had to choose it would be with Colm Gildea, (Country Manager, Ireland) or one of the support nurses who deploy the HealthBeacons in patient homes.

When you are working behind a computer screen, it’s easy to get disconnected with who we are trying to help, the patients. By being close to the patients, interacting with them daily, hearing their stories and seeing the impact you are having on a patient’s life, it gives your life and work more meaning. It’s what attracted me most to the company; it’s why I’m here.

What do you find the most challenging at HB?

“Kill your darlings” ― Stephen King, On Writing.

As in all creative endeavours and areas of innovation, the hardest part is being ruthless with your ideas and choosing which ones to produce and which one kill off. In a startup, everything is a moving target, and you need to make sure you deploy your resources on the right problems, at the right time to create the greatest impact.

What do you like most about HB?

The people. We have the best team in the digital therapeutic industry.

What have you gained from working at HB?

Better insight into how technology can improve patient outcomes. The second is I’ve developed a great appreciation for what it takes to bring a piece of hardware to market. Working with IoT hardware is a humbling experience.

How do you define success?

Success to me is waking up healthy every day to work on fun projects that make people’s lives better, no matter how big or small the impact.

What is your favourite restaurant in your hometown?

London isn’t known for its food scene, but I have to give a shout-out to my good friend’s restaurant, Burrito Boyz. If you are in search of the best burrito, look no further. That said, Montreal has an incredible food scene, and I’m still trying to pick my favourite spot.

Bonne journée!

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