– Digital therapeutics startup Kaia Health raises $8M in funding led by Optum Ventures to support the accelerated execution of clinical trials required to demonstrate efficacy to the FDA.
– Kaia Health utilizes multimodal therapy, which combines physical, psychological and educational elements to relieve back pain at home, without medication.
– Optum’s investment in Kaia Health will consider use of Kaia Health’s digital therapeutic offerings for back pain and COPD with Optum and UnitedHealth customers.
Kaia Health, a digital therapeutics startup that creates accessible, evidence-based treatments for a range of disorders including back pain and COPD, today announced it has raised $8M in funding led by Optum Ventures, part of UnitedHealth Group (UHG). The funding marks the second significant investment for Optum Ventures in the digital therapeutics space this year.
The Gold Standard in Pain Therapy – Digitalized
A sedentary lifestyle and long office hours take their toll with 11.4 workdays lost per person on average, according to the US Bone and Joint Initiative. Founded in 2015, Kaia Health utilizes multimodal therapy, which combines physical, psychological and educational elements to relieve back pain at home, without medication. Kaia Health has developed a smartphone-based approach for managing a range of chronic conditions, with its leading product focused on musculoskeletal disorders (MSK) such as chronic back pain. To date, Kaia Health has enrolled more than 275,000 users to-date in their digital therapy program.
AI-Powered Motion Tracking Technology
Kaia Health’s world-leading 2D motion tracking solution named Motion Coach enables users to get real-time feedback on their exercise performance using their smartphone’s camera, which, when taken together with the platform’s psychological and eduction support has been proven to outperform conventional therapy.
Significance of Optum’s Strategic Investment in Kaia Health
The investment by Optum Ventures helps Kaia Health address the rising costs of treating MSK-related conditions, the difficulty patients have in accessing gold-standard treatment, and the need for innovative, scalable and cost-effective technology solutions to confront this issue. Optum Ventures’ investment will be used to accelerate sales growth in the U.S. healthcare market, extend the platform into other chronic indications and expand the supporting clinical evidence base. As part of Optum’s investment in Kaia Health, Optum will consider use of Kaia Health’s digital therapeutic offerings for back pain and COPD with Optum and UnitedHealth customers.
“Kaia Health has taken a technology-led approach to create a digital therapeutic that will make treatment more accessible to patients who need it,” said Heather Roxborough, Partner at Optum Ventures. “We believe Kaia Health’s digital therapeutic solutions will benefit those suffering from MSK disorders and are excited about its application in other indications.”
Recent Peer-Reviewed Clinical Studies
In May, Kaia Health completed a peer-reviewed study that was published in NPJ Digital Medicine showing patients using Kaia, the AI-powered motion tracking technology analyzes the patient’s movements using the iPhone’s camera, reported significantly lower pain levels compared to the control group treated with physiotherapy and online education. The new funding will support Kaia Health’s accelerated execution of clinical trials required to demonstrate efficacy to the FDA, the development of an in-house coaching expertise, as well as growth in the U.S. B2B market. In addition, Kaia Health’s AI Lab is also working on advancing our therapy personalization engine, and developing digital biomarkers for therapeutic purposes for our late-stage pipeline covering: COPD, osteoarthritis, and Parkinson’s disease.
Why It Matters
“The investment from Optum Ventures will allow us to explore integration opportunities throughout the complete patient treatment journey,” said Konstantin Mehl, Founder, and CEO of Kaia Health. “We are proud to partner with Optum Ventures, a company at the forefront of improving health care,”