Former FCA Intern, Roja Garimella, wrote this investment thesis report on End-of-life care. Software solutions, services, and predictive modeling all play an important role in the new era of end-of-life care, and we at FCA are excited by the opportunities and potential the future holds.
"End-of-life care is an important part of the care continuum for patients and the families of patients with terminal conditions or those encroaching upon old age. Palliative care is one option for end-of-life care and is specifically focused on symptom and pain management for patients with serious illnesses; it is not necessarily limited to patients in their last days or months of life and can be administered across a variety of care settings (from home to hospital).
In the U.S. healthcare system, a majority of end-of-life care and its associated costs have traditionally been driven by hospital stays and medical interventions, often involving high- technology and aggressive surgical or pharmacological therapies. Research suggests that this is due in large part to the lack of conversations and alternative resources to help patients, caregivers, and healthcare providers navigate this difficult time. Entrepreneurs are answering this “call-to-action” with a variety of new businesses focused on improving end-of-life care and expanding access and knowledge about palliative care options. Companies in this space have emerged in the past decade, showing promise and early success with family- and patient- friendly services that have helped reduce healthcare costs and improve quality-of-life. Many of these start-ups have taken on a patient-centered approach to care, such as by increasing access and convenience of health care services or by providing platforms to have conversations about patient’s wishes, leading to an increase in patient education, autonomy, and dignity.