Chicago medical startup raises $10 million

By January 3, 2019

Chicago’s very own SonarMD has attracted positive attention for its product that treats patients with complex disorders. That momentum has now led to a $10 million in funding from lead investors Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners and Arboretum Ventures.

In partnering with payers and specialists to cover “high beta” patients that receive expensive drug treatments, SonarMD is aiming to find cost-effective ways to cover this group of sick people. This process also seeks to rehaul the incentive-based model that plagues American medical care in the 21st century, hoping to ultimately have patients connected to specialty practitioners that are more involved and motivated in their care.

“We see great promise in this model,” said Anna Haghgooie of Sandbox Industries, which is part of BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners, in a press release. “Although SonarMD is starting with inflammatory bowel disease in GI practices, their strategy could easily expand into a number of other ‘high beta’ specialty areas where there’s room to improve on care, cost, and outcomes.”

According to the company, this increase in funding will allow SonarMD to expand growth by hiring more staff. Investors see the niche startup as occupying an important marketplace going forward.

“Arboretum is very excited to co-lead the investment in SonarMD,” said Tom Shehab, MD, managing partner of Arboretum Ventures. “SonarMD is in a unique position to improve the quality and cost of care for patients with chronic disease. Current care delivery systems are too often fragmented, and that hurts patient experience and outcomes. It’s encouraging that SonarMD’s model relies on strengthening the patient-provider relationship and maintaining continuity of care to improve the overall outcome.”

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