Post-Acute Care Staffing Platform ShiftMed Raises $45 Million to Fuel Expansion – Home
ShiftMed – a mobile platform that acts as a liaison between health care providers and workers – announced Wednesday that it has raised $45 million in funding.
The McLean, Virginia-based company has experienced explosive growth of late. While it began 2021 in just 10 markets across the country, it will finish the year in 56.
“We think we’re built to be one of the winners in this category,” Todd Walrath, the CEO of ShiftMed, told Home Health Care News. “And it’s a huge market. But the days of non-technology-based staffing and workforce management are kind of behind us. You’re seeing companies … moving millions of dollars from traditional staffing options to more tech-based options.”
The funding was led by Panoramic Ventures and HealthWorx, the latter of which is the innovation and investment arm of CareFirst Holdings.
ShiftMed directly hires health care workers – including home-based care workers – and then contracts with health care providers across the continuum to fill their needs. In Q3 of this year alone, ShiftMed provided staffing for over 200,000 patients on behalf of its provider partners.
Among its more than 700 provider partners are home-based care agencies, skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), hospitals and assisted living providers. Currently, ShiftMed’s platform is home to more than 60,000 health care workers, who are able to choose their shifts and caseloads in a more flexible manner due to its unique technology.
“We were essentially a home care retailer for the first few years,” Walrath said. “But we’ve found that our strength was really recruiting, credentialing, scheduling and paying caregivers. And in a world where everybody needs caregivers all the time, we found some irony in the fact that we were really good at this thing that everyone else is really bad at. So we tried to focus more on that.”
Staffing issues in post-acute care and home-based care had been a pressing issue long before COVID-19, but were exacerbated during the pandemic.
A recent ShiftMed report even found that almost half of U.S. nurses were at least “somewhat likely” to leave their professions in the upcoming two years. Of those workers, 38% planned to pursue non-patient facing roles in health care, while 31% planned on leaving health care altogether.
Given that ShiftMed has had success in mitigating these issues for providers, its value has steadily increased over time.
“We believe [ShiftMed] has the scale to be an important player in the health care space,” Paul Iaffaldano, a general partner at Panoramic Ventures, said in the press release announcing the funding news. “Their end-to-end products for health care professionals are extremely compelling, and we are eager to help them with their geographic expansion.”
Panoramic Ventures is an Atlanta-based venture capital firm that targets Southeast and Midwest startups, mostly involved in technology.
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The advantage of ShiftMed, Walrath believes, is its flexibility for both its partners and the workers. For instance, the provider – or even family – can plug in the exact type of worker they need, including what credentials they must have and when they need them. On the other end, the worker can specify pay, scheduling and the type of patients they can care for.
It’s the type of future-facing staffing platform that providers “needing to operate a little bit more like they’re in survival mode,” according to Walrath, can lean on in a turbulent hiring environment.
On the other end, because ShiftMed is mostly remote, it can grow into different markets quickly with relative ease. As opposed to hiring more workers and opening up brick-and-mortar offices in new cities, the company can just carry over its product from one geographic area to the other simply through Zoom pitches, phone calls and some rejiggering of its platform.
“You could never move as fast the other way,” Walrath said.
And that’s made its growth plans more realistic, and in turn, made it more appealing to backers.
“In our efforts to improve health equity, we recognize that ancillary services like caregiving play a vital role,” Doba Parushev, the director of venture capital at Healthworx, said in the press release. “Our investment in ShiftMed expands our toolkit with in-home services, supporting our mission and continued ability to improve health outcomes.”