• Ed Sealover

After a most unusual start, Denver health IT company charts U.S. growth

KP Yelpaala, founder and CEO of health information technology company access.mobile, calls his company’s growth a “reverse innovation story.”

Where most Denver-based start-ups launch their concept locally, seek success in Colorado and then look to grow outside the state or even the country, access.mobile has been testing and growing its offerings for seven years in East Africa. And only in recent months has it found clients stateside, as it enters what Yelpaala calls a “very active growth process” that could lead to significant domestic revenue increases.

The company works with health systems to hone their communications with patients in lower-income but growing areas in order to increase their health outcomes. From its offices in Nairobi, Kenya and Kampala, Uganda, it has contracted with local hospitals and other providers to replace paper records with electronic ones and then to communicate with patients via text messages in particular, producing both increased compliance with wellness plans and a near-break-even bottom line for the for-profit company.

Last year, however, access.mobile hopped the pond in the opposite direction from most smaller startups and landed one of its first American clients. Adventist Health White Memorial Hospital, a Los Angeles facility that works largely with lower-income Hispanics, was looking for ways to use health data to achieve better outcomes within its population. The Denver company set up a pilot program where it targeted 20,000 patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure and learned what language they prefer for their communications and which type of communication gets the best response from them.

While it remains early in the project, access.mobile is receiving feedback and active participation from many of the test subjects and has moved onto a new phase in which it is working with the hospital on how to craft the most effective communications to ensure the patients get preventative care and stay on their prescription medications... READ MORE

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