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Thought Leaders in Artificial Intelligence: Shantanu Nigam, CEO of Jvion (Part 3)

Posted on Wednesday, Jan 29th 2020

Sramana Mitra: This 30 million patient data is all from your customer base or are you using any other kind of data?

Shantanu Nigam: A lot of this data has been owned by our customer base. We’re allowed to use it. We’ve bought some of the data from the industry. Some of it is the census kind of data. It’s a mix of a lot of sources.

Sramana Mitra: There is data available to be purchased to do this kind of work? You’re saying that there is purchasable data available?

Shantanu Nigam: To some extent. It doesn’t have the clinical quality that you would get from the data you are getting from a hospital. The quality and depth is lesser.

Sramana Mitra: How much of this 30 million patient data is hospital data that is directly from your customer base?

Shantanu Nigam: Most of it is from our customer base. In our first year or two, we relied more on external data. Over time, that has been less and less relevant. Right now, it’s a very small fraction. 

Sramana Mitra: So 30 million patients is your footprint. You are covering enough hospitals to get access to to 30 million patients’ data.

Shantanu Nigam: That is correct. 

Sramana Mitra: We talked about one use case. Give me a bit more of a perspective on use cases while the patient is in the hospital. Then let’s switch to outside the hospital.

Shantanu Nigam: Other examples are sepsis, falls, and infections. For patients outside the hospital, you would look at avoidable admissions. You would look at COPD or COPD-related deterioration. Those are a few popular examples. These are situations where patients outside the hospital can get complications that will result in more utilization.

Sramana Mitra: What stage of your evolution are you in right now? How many hospitals are you in? How big is the company?

Shantanu Nigam: Last month, we were identified as having the most customers in the clinical AI space in the country. The second number and the third number are less than half of our customer base. That includes IBM Watson and a lot of other companies.

Today, we have about 50 hospital system contracts which translates to about 300 hospitals. Again, it’s about 10% of acute hospitals in the country. Our revenue is between $20 million and $30 million ARR.

Sramana Mitra: This is a venture-funded company?

Shantanu Nigam: We have some VCs. We brought in new investors last year in December. Currently, our investors are GMI, Health Enterprise Partners, Health Philosophy Capital, Intermountain Ventures, and Trinity Ventures.

Sramana Mitra: You bootstrapped the company and then brought in private equity.

Shantanu Nigam: We got a VC in 2016. We bootstrapped up to 2015. Last year, we brought in a new group of investors.

Sramana Mitra: Switching gears, what open problems do you see in your space? What pointers can you give to new entrepreneurs who might be looking for a problem to solve?

Shantanu Nigam: Healthcare cost is about 18% of our GDP. This is double the average of all of the developed nations. Why is it so high? Our quality of care is not that good.

Why? A big percentage of our cost is wasted. Those are dollars that are not helping anybody. That waste comes from avoidable harm. What else has happened in the last few years? We’ve gotten a lot of data. Data is more readily available. Storage is cheaper. Processing is cheaper.

How do you look at that change and try to apply it to the same problem? As you get more data and more processing, there are better ways of going back to the same underlying problem. There are two ways. One would be, more and more of the push will happen towards avoiding those costs. That will translate to more data exchange.

The problem that is already happening is of lack of infrastructure and security. You have problems happening with the privacy and security. Laws are there. On the technology side, we are just getting there. We got a lot more to do.

The second thing is more proactive wellness programs, which could be genetic. More proactive companies fit so well in that direction that CMS is taking now to reduce avoidable harm. They are also well-geared to capitalize and leverage with more data and processing power.

Sramana Mitra: Excellent. Thank you for your time.

This segment is part 3 in the series : Thought Leaders in Artificial Intelligence: Shantanu Nigam, CEO of Jvion
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