Independence Blue Cross Taps Podimetrics to Prevent Diabetic Amputations Via RPM

What You Should Know:

– Podimetrics raises $45M to help at-risk providers and health plans prevent diabetic amputations in high-risk patients.

– With this latest round of funding, Podimetrics plans to focus on hiring to build out their product development and research teams, while also expanding the breadth of services delivered by their nurse support team.

Podimetrics, a care management company with the leading solution to help prevent costly and deadly diabetic foot ulcer (DFUs) raises $45M led by D1 Capital Partners, along with two new investors, the Medtech Convergence Fund and an undisclosed strategic investor. Existing investors, Polaris Partners and Scientific Health Development, also participated in the financing.

The High Cost of Diabetic Foot Complications

Diabetic Foot Ulcers (DFU) are one of the most common, debilitating, and costly complications of diabetes. Every 4 minutes in the U.S., a patient loses a limb due to diabetes complications with over $109B spent on lower extremity complications of diabetes. Black Americans face diabetes-related amputations 2x as often as white Americans. Podimetrics strives to reduce disparities in diabetes care and unnecessary limb loss. Foot temperature monitoring is recommended by the International Working Group on the Diabetic Foot and the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons for preventing DFUs and other inflammatory foot diseases.

One Step Closer to Healthier Feet

Founded in 2011 by a physician and engineers from MIT and Harvard,  Podimetrics developed the SmartMat — the only easy-to-use, an at-home mat that a patient steps on for 20 seconds per day. The mat detects temperature changes in the foot, which are associated with early signs of inflammation, often a precursor to DFUs. The FDA-cleared and HIPAA-compliant SmartMat are remotely monitored by Podimetrics’ in-house nurse support team. If the data from the mat are indicative of potential health issues, Podimetrics’ nursing team connects with the patient and the patients’ provider as close to real-time as possible. The SmartMat, which also has the Seal of Approval from the American Podiatric Medical Association, has already been used by thousands of patients through partnerships with leading risk-based healthcare providers and regional and national health plans, such as the Veterans Health Administration.

Recent Trial Results & Outcomes

In a previous multi-center trial, diabetic foot complications were shown to be detected up to five weeks before they presented clinically. Even after one full year, about 70% of patients continued to use the SmartMat regularly. Early detection and related preventive care actions often result in significant cost-savings, too, anywhere from $8,000–$13,000 in savings per member per year (savings estimates based on customer research and analysis). In addition, considering Black Americans and Hispanics are two to three times more likely to require a diabetic amputation than others, Podimetrics’ SmartMat holds the power to help support health equity advancements over time.

Recent peer-reviewed research has also suggested the following benefits among patients using the SmartMat at home: 71% elimination of amputations52% reduction in all-cause hospitalizations40% reduction in emergency department visits; and a 26% reduction in outpatient visits.

Building on these notable data-driven findings, most recently Podimetrics published peer-reviewed research in Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice, the journal of the International Diabetes Federation. This research found that during episodes-of-care for DFUs, patients are 50% more likely to die and nearly three times more likely to be hospitalized. What this research shows is that patients with a DFU tend to have multiple other chronic health conditions, putting them at higher risk for hospitalization and even death. In addition, these medically complex patients are often among the costliest patients within a healthcare system. As a result of this research, diabetic foot complications can and should be viewed as indicators of other costly chronic conditions not commonly associated with DFUs.

“The patients we serve at Podimetrics are extremely complex and have been largely ignored by our healthcare system,” said Jon Bloom, MD, CEO and Co-founder of Podimetrics. “With our SmartMat and this latest funding, we have the chance to put an end to ‘Civil War’–era amputations with early, home-based detection. We also have the opportunity to improve the overall health and well-being for patients dealing with diabetes because of the close relationship we’ve built through our trusted technology and clinical services.”

This content was originally published here.