Portfolio Insights – MediDrive

Portfolio Insights – MediDrive

Alan Murray – President and Partner, MediDrive

Issue 13, May 2024

The Leverage Health Portfolio Insights Series

Welcome to the third edition of Leverage Health Portfolio Insights, where we continue our mission to highlight the innovators and leaders driving transformation in the healthcare industry. In this issue, we are honored to feature an exclusive interview with Alan Murray, President and Partner at MediDrive, conducted by our founder, Richard Lungen.

Alan Murray shares his insights on MediDrive’s revolutionary approach and its impact on improving patient outcomes. This conversation delves into the innovative strategies and visionary leadership that are propelling MediDrive to the forefront of the industry.

Join us as we explore the compelling journey of MediDrive and gain valuable perspectives on the future of healthcare from one of its most influential leaders. Welcome to another inspiring edition of Leverage Insights.

Richard Lungen (Leverage Health)

Alan thank you for joining us here today.

Alan, when did you become President and Partner of MediDrive and why did you take on this role and perhaps you could explain the process from then to now?

Alan Murray (medidrive.com)

Richard you and I obviously go back sometime. It is not a simple answer but it is an exciting answer. From my perspective, I’ve always been involved in what I think of as turnaround or getting companies re-started. And if I go back at least as long as I’ve had this incredible friendship with you Richard from the CareConnect days launching a health plan within a health system, building it from the ground up, as a new entrepreneurial concept. Then going back to Empire BlueCross BlueShield as the president and CEO in 2018, Where they also needed a lot of turn-around help and a reimagining of the brand. Between that and a number of side hobbies, I have always been involved in some form of entrepreneurial concept and getting things started.

But all of these ventures have to have some sort of passionate impactful reality in terms of where healthcare is going. I’m not interested in just doing something. I’m interested in making a difference, in any part of health care in this country, because I feel so strongly about this system in the U.S. compared to the health care system I grew up in.

As part of that journey, I actually got to know a couple of founding luminaries in the transportation business (both corporate and healthcare). And to be very frank, Richard, my involvement in transportation and healthcare was something that just happened. It wasn’t something I ever focused on. It wasn’t something that I really concentrated on in terms of its impact.

As I got to know these individuals and understand the unbelievable capacity they have for getting people to the care they need in a timely, reliable, and compassionate manner. It suddenly occurred to me that the rest of the healthcare industry has a huge gap in it when it comes to the application of transportation as a critical part of the healthcare journey.

And by the way, Richard, that is an absolute intended pun. It is a healthcare journey. And if you think about it, almost every single journey starts with somebody getting in a vehicle.

Even if it’s a 911 vehicle, you’re getting in some sort of vehicle. I realized that there’s a tremendous opportunity to have an impact on healthcare because I don’t believe transportation is something that is done correctly in the healthcare industry.

And with my background in healthcare, my partners’ background in transportation, and our incredible proprietary software, we have the knowledge it takes to run a proper transportation company in healthcare.

Six months ago, I just felt like I saw the light. I saw an incredible opportunity to join with this amazing team and to really start making a difference and an impact in a part of the industry that you and I have been in for so long that I believe has been grossly overlooked.

Richard Lungen

That’s really helpful. Thank you. What is the gap in healthcare? What problem do you envision MediDrive will solve?

Alan Murray

The problem in healthcare right now that I think goes completely unnoticed by health plans, and maybe does not go unnoticed by providers, but perhaps just something they’re dealing with is missed appointments.

If you’re in the Medicaid space, there’s evidence out there that says up to 35% of all scheduled appointments don’t happen because the people covered by a Medicaid transportation benefit can’t get to that appointment.

It’s about 15 to 20% with Medicare Advantage patients. If you think about that on the impact of healthcare, it’s kind of staggering, not only with a sizable reduction in potential revenue for providers where 15 – 20 percent of their appointments aren’t happening. That’s a pretty material impact to their practice. But way more important than that is the impact on an individual’s health.

If you’re not going to your preventative care, if you’re not going to your cardiologist, if you’re not going to your nephrologist, where do you end up?

The emergency room. Or if you’re in the emergency room and you get admitted and you don’t get that follow-up care, guess what? You get re-admitted. I learned a fascinating statistic, Richard, a few months back, where if you have a knee replacement, 90 percent of the people who don’t show up to the follow-up appointment end up having scar revision surgery.

One missed follow-up appointment leads to a massive impact in healthcare and on the care of these people.

All of these impacts are with the current transportation solutions that exist in the industry today. What MediDrive is doing that is changing the game is to integrate end to end, reliable, incredible transportation that is simple to use because it is so heavily integrated into the journey that currently exists.

That means integrating with an EHR, an electronic health record, integrating within an appointment system, allowing a provider to see the scheduled transportation and actually watch the journey occur so they know somebody is coming to their office.

Allowing friends and family members to actually see the journey as well, so they know their loved ones are getting to where they need to go, but also handing the person off, not leaving them on the side of the street. Our drivers are specifically trained not to let anyone, anu patient just be left in a doctor’s office or at the curb.

Even though it’s a technology heavily company, at the end of the day, it’s a personal interaction company where that interaction between driver and patient drives the experience that we expect when our loved ones are going to and from a doctor’s appointment.

Richard Lungen

Thank you. I want to go revisit or initial question and dig into that story. One of the things that’s really unique about the company you’re running is that it’s not a startup. It’s a startup within a legacy business. MediDrive is out of the gate, a sustainable, scalable, platform. Tell us more about that.

Alan Murray

What is truly unique about MediDrive as a company, not necessarily as a transportation company or as a health care company, but as a company, is at its core, it’s actually a 40-year-old company.

What do I mean by that? Well, about 40 years ago, the founder actually managed to take what, in essence, was a gap in the delivery of black cars within New York City and built an incredible fleet over the years, actually servicing Goldman Sachs and large law firms and so forth.

Fast forward into the mid-2000s they saw an opportunity for the MTA, the metropolitan Transportation Authority in terms of how they deliver paratransit around New York City.

It was grossly inefficient. And within only a couple of years, the partner company, CTG, is actually delivering over 5 million paratransit rides a year for New York City with an on-time performance of over 96%.

Now that’s in the craziest traffic city, at least in the US. And we are able to do it while achieving a 4.8 out of 5 star customer satisfaction rating.

If you think about transportation, it doesn’t matter who you are, getting 4.8 satisfaction with 97% on-time delivery inside New York City is unheard of.

The reasoning behind that is not just the transportation knowledge they have, but the ability to build an AI and machine learning technology stack that is a self-learning environment specifically designed for this type of transportation. And so once you have that incredible technology stack and you have the deep experience of managing transportation at-scale, Richard the next step was adding healthcare knowledge. And that is the confluence of both executives and application within healthcare that led to the creation of MediDrive from that company.

And so to your point, as we’re thinking about the growth of MediDrive, it’s really about the growth of healthcare customers, not the growth of infrastructure that is required in order to build a company. That end-to-end the company infrastructure already exists. It is there, it’s tested, it has huge volume running through it.

We’re now just applying all that knowledge and experience to health care, which I think is the next stage of the company’s natural development.

Richard Lungen

Tell us about MediDrive’s unique approach, differentiation across its peer group. Obviously as you’re growing MediDrive, there are incumbents that have been in place in Medicare Advantage plans, Medicaid plans, state government. What makes MediDrive different and unique?

Alan Murray

I think the health care environment in this country is incredibly fragmented.

And the issue with that fragmentation is a complete lack of integration and coordination as a result. Don’t get me wrong, people across all the states in this country can order a car. But if that car is running late, they may not know about it. And certainly the health plan or the provider doesn’t know about it. From my perspective, what is missing is that true end-to-end understanding of how a ride is scheduled, executed and is part of that health care journey.

There is nobody in the industry that is looking at that entire experience. What’s really differentiating about MediDrive is we literally will own every component of that experience.

I liken this to OpenTable. It may not be the best analogy, but it’s an analogy. When you use OpenTable, you can reserve a table at a great restaurant a week out. When you show up to that restaurant though Open Table has no more interaction with you. All they’ve done is facilitate your ride. In this case, your appointment at the restaurant. What happens within that restaurant happens within that restaurant.

The service is great. Good. If the meal is late or something happens, the food is bad. Great. You get to leave a review on open table, but it’s not their problem.

With MediDrive, we own the whole experience. We may not own the restaurant, but we own the training of the servers, own the training of the managers. We own the type of food you’re going to have. We own that entire experience from beginning to end. Because it’s the only way that we can truly control the interaction. So taking it out of Open Table and restaurants, when you make appointment with MediDrive, we can integrate with EMR, and integrate with the transportation providers. We train every single driver.

We have en-route monitoring and real-time dispatch. So that means if their car is running late, we will pull a car out and we will put a new car in its place. Why? Because we are watching every step of every single route, non-stop. We generally don’t use Lyft or Uber. We don’t use any transportation provider, who will not agree to that complete interaction and vertical integration. Why? Because it’s the only way you get a MediDrive experience.

Richard Lungen

Last question, what lies ahead for MediDrive this year, next year, and in the future?

Alan Murray

I think that’s a great question, Richard. Because of the way MediDrive operates, our ability to scale is already within our system.

In terms of the technology. the application, we’re cloud-based, we’re server-based, so our ability to scale volume is almost instantaneous.

Where we are currently growing is market by market, by, in essence, turning on the MediDrive network experience as we go state to state. We encourage health plans, hospitals, and at-risk provider groups to begin adopting this new approach to transportation.

Right now we’re building out and finishing our network in Florida across the entire state. That obviously opens up health plans and various provider groups to start using MediDrive.

And we’re doing that, obviously, in other states across the country. But the other really important thing, Richard, about MediDrive is at our heart, we’re a fleet operations company. Our ability to have scope and increase is pretty sizable. We’re actually working with providers and hospitals in order to deliver specialty drugs to their patients.

For example, if you have self-injectables, then you need a patient to be at home at a particular time in order to receive that. Those medications can’t be left on the doorstep. That, in essence, is just an inversion of what MediDrive does every day today when we pick passengers up. Instead of picking passengers up, we can bring the treatment to them.

The ability for MediDrive’s fleet operations to scope into multiple different facets of healthcare is something that I’m incredibly excited about and shows the adaptability of the software and the operations we have beyond delivering people through a non-emergency medical transportation benefit.

Richard Lungen

Any closing comments?

Alan Murray

I would say my closing comments are twofold. First and foremost, me personally, I’m incredibly proud that the combination of all of my experiences to date have led me to have an opportunity to work in a space within healthcare that I know can make an incredible difference in people’s lives, especially those that are currently underserved..

Those that may be less fortunate, less affluent, those that may have a number of comorbid conditions, and quite frankly, those that rely on regular transportation for them to lead a far healthier life and get about that life.

I think the opportunity here for growth is almost secondary to the impact that we can have on society.

And I’ll add to that, the ability to work with Leverage Health, is the catalyst that will allow us to have that impact quicker and faster.

And I think that we can all be incredibly proud when we see the outcomes and the reduction in catastrophic results that together between Leverage Health and MediDrive that we’ll actually have on society.

I really feel like this is the next stage in what for me has been an incredible career but will be something that I will be able to turn around, look my kids in the eye and say, hey, we made a difference.

Richard Lungen

Very well said. Thank you.

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