After stepping down as the CEO of cloud-based EHR platform Practice Fusion in mid-2015, founder Ryan Howard is back with a new digital health startup focused on a life-saving Wearable-as-a-Service. The startup is currently developing its first product, iBeat Life Monitor, a heart monitoring smartwatch wearable that perpetually monitors and detects cardiac arrest, heart attack, and atrial fibrillation.
Similar to your average medical alert system for seniors, in the case of a life-threatening emergency, iBeat will instantly alert the user by asking if he or she is O.K. If they reply ‘no’ or don’t respond within five seconds, the smartwatch alerts their loved ones, and emergency responders in real-time, helping ensure immediate care delivery and potentially saving the user’s life. Additionally, loved ones can receive weekly and monthly updates on a user’s health via the cloud-based platform.
The idea to start iBeat stemmed from a close friend of Howard’s passing. Late last year, Marc Duntley, a childhood friend of Howard’s, suddenly passed away in his sleep. He was only 40 years old. Howard took this as his cue to start a company that, like Practice Fusion, helps save lives, but in a more personal manner – by speeding the delivery of care.
“Over the past decade building the largest cloud-based physician-patient platform in the U.S., I’m applying many of my learnings, including incorporating the DNA that established our award-winning culture and product, as well as reconciling many of the mistakes I made at Practice Fusion,” said Ryan Howard, founder and CEO of iBeat. “We’re incredibly excited to be bringing a Wearable-as-a-Service to market that we believe will be massively impactful to the community and will also have the potential to save lives.”
Future Roll-Out Plans
There is no official release date for the smartwatch at this time, but Howard plans to launch it on KickStarter this fall priced at $200. Users will also have to pay a monthly fee maintain their call centers.
The iBeat team is led by a handful of Practice Fusion veterans including Larry Stone, Brian Boarini, and Kristin Tinsley. As iBeat’s Lead Front-End Architect, Stone oversees software architecture and engineering. The iBeat team plans to double its staff by the end of this year, hiring in engineering, design, growth marketing, and operations.