Medici, an Austin startup that has developed a mobile app to connect doctors and patients, has landed $22.4 million in funding as investors continue to give the company a strong prognosis.
The new money — on top of $24.2 million raised about 18 months ago — comes from a number of prominent business people, Medici said, including retired Dell executive Tom Meredith, retired Publix Super Markets CEO Howard Jenkins and hedge fund manager Ken Griffin of Citadel.
Medici founder and CEO Clinton Phillips said the money primarily will be used for engineering and to beef up the functionality of the company's app, enabling it to work in multiple languages and countries.
In addition, the company is boosting its hiring and has plans to add “at least” 20 employees in Austin, Phillips said, on top of 15 already here. Medici currently has a 36 employees, including workers at offices in Houston, Washington, D.C., and Johannesburg, South Africa.
“We plan to be a global platform,” Phillips said. “We have some wonderful breakthrough technologies that we are going to build on top of our platform.”
Phillips, a 43-year-old native of Johannesburg, said the app currently can work in English and in Afrikaans, which he described as “basically African Dutch.” But he said Medici plans to add Spanish to the functionality in the next few months.
The company launched its mobile app in October 2016, enabling patients to connect with physicians by text between scheduled appointments. The app lets users contact doctors, dentists, therapists and even veterinarians for consultations, e-prescriptions and referrals.
Using the app, which is compliant with HIPAA federal privacy regulations, patients can also share photos and video, as well as see their entire consultation history in a single place.
“They can turn any consult into a video conference or a phone call” with the push of a button while they’re texting with their health care provider, Phillips said.
About 2,000 doctors nationwide — including about 500 veterinarians — are using the app to connect with patients, he said. Of those, about 600 are in Texas and about 120 are in Austin.
Medici’s app is free to download from the Apple App Store, Google Play or the Medici website.
Patients pay a fee to use the service that is set by the individual doctors offering it. Phillips said the fee averages about $40 for a 10-minute consultation.
According to Medici’s website, doctors offering the service generally respond to requests for text consultations within 24 hours after receiving them, depending on their schedules.
Phillips previously founded two startups, Houston-based 2nd.MD, which provides direct access via video and phone to research doctors in the U.S., and Aspen Back & Body, a Colorado-based clinic focused on nonsurgical rehab for back problems, which was acquired in 2009.
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