Written by Robert Leitch.
For any business that offers health insurance, keeping employees healthy is essential to keeping the cost of insurance low. Businesses with thousands of employees can save millions of dollars each year if employees maintain their health by going to yearly checkups, taking their prescribed medications and refilling those prescriptions when needed. Sick employees are costly to employers, but most businesses have no way to keep tabs on employees to make sure they’re staying healthy.
Columbus, Ohio’s, Health Data Intelligence uses analytics to help businesses and organizations effectively manage the health of their employees. The company’s cloud-based software pulls data from medical and pharmaceutical claims processed each time an employee goes to see a physician or fills a prescription at a pharmacy. That data is then compiled in a dashboard, allowing businesses to identify those employees who are likely to incur additional medical costs in the near future.
“Case managers can use their Population Intelligence dashboard to help employees maximize the benefits of their health plan and improve their health,” said Jude Odu, founder and CEO of Health Data Intelligence. “The work accomplished by these case managers can assure an employer that their health plan is providing for healthier employees and families at reduced healthcare costs.”
A majority of Health Data Intelligence’s clients are self-insured employers and large organizations with many employees, including hospitals and health systems.
Odu has worked in healthcare his entire career, including data management work for University Hospitals in Cleveland, Ohio. He got the inspiration to start Health Data Intelligence while doing research for his Ph.D. dissertation, which focuses on health insurance claims and administrative data. As he collected the information necessary for his project, he realized that kind of data would be beneficial for businesses looking to track the cost of their health insurance plans.
Health Data Intelligence received $150,000 in funding from Rev1 Ventures, a central Ohio partner of Ohio Third Frontier. Often called concept funding, the company used this money to gauge interest from potential customers, hire additional employees and advance the company’s software to make it as user-friendly as possible. In addition to financial assistance, Health Data Intelligence also received administrative help from Rev1.
“They helped us with mentoring and connected us with professionals who helped refine our marketing strategies,” said Odu. “They also introduced us to other investors and provided office space for the company. We’ve appreciated all their support both before and after funding.”
Health Data Intelligence currently has five employees, with clients in Illinois and North Carolina. They are in the process of signing their first Columbus-based client, with the goal of expanding to more cities across the country in the near future. Odu says his company is very fortunate to be located in central Ohio.
“I love working in Ohio and starting a business here,” said Odu. “The climate here is very friendly to startups and everyone is interested in helping new companies succeed. There’s nothing holding entrepreneurs back.”