It’s a tale as old as time: A patient leaves a doctor’s office with a list of referrals to secure basic living necessities, like housing, food, transportation, or specialized healthcare services. “Try these places,” the referrer might say. “Good luck, and I hope you can figure it out to get what you need.” The patient then spends hours, days, or weeks to research options, reach out to service providers, and coordinate their own care.
This frustrating – and often unproductive – experience may have happened to you, or someone you know. Dan Brillman and Taylor Justice saw this happening firsthand with their friends and colleagues, and they sought to revolutionize the current healthcare system to be more streamlined, accountable, and value-based. As co-founders, they built Unite Us, a technology company that standardizes how health and social care providers communicate and work, track outcomes together, and ensures services are delivered seamlessly to the people who need them most.
Unite Us creates an ecosystem of health care providers and social service agencies that work together in a quality and accountable network that takes care of the whole person. Referrals are vetted and accepted through the platform, and the services and results are tracked. This drastically reduces patient frustration and the amount of wait time to receive services. With Unite Us, people know where to go, are connected to the right point of contact, and are referred to the agencies that most appropriately meet their needs.
As U.S. veterans themselves, Dan and Taylor were motivated by their experiences navigating themselves and friends through the complex systems ranging from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) programs and benefits to community-based services. Salesforce’s Chief Medical Officer and Healthcare & Life Sciences SVP Dr. Ashwini Zenooz, is the former senior clinical leader at the VA and a huge supporter of the Unite Us platform. “The VA serves over nine million veterans every year and addresses critical components of veterans' transition back into civilian life: from enrolling, identifying the right level of benefits, understanding coverage, providing care, to looking at what resources are available externally in the community,” Dr. Zenooz explains. “The biggest challenge is connecting everything together. Unite Us is working towards the best outcome possible by making sure none of these essential pieces slip through the cracks.
The company now powers 55 networks in 23 states, working with many of the largest insurance companies, healthcare providers, governments, and community-based organizations. Taylor credits localization and community engagement as crucial factors to their success. “Regardless of the population or focus – veteran, Medicaid, Medicare, opioid use – these people live in local communities and are supported by local networks,” Taylor explains. “We don’t look at technology as the silver bullet, but as a platform to better integrate and enhance how these communities function.” Whether it’s United Way in Kentucky, or the Department of Health and Human Services in North Carolina, Unite Us works deeply with local community-based organizations and case managers who work with those in need daily. These experts have a finger on the pulse of the health systems and can meaningfully exchange data and information about the needs of their patients.
“We pride ourselves on ‘closing the loop’ on the care that is delivered across a community. We establish a sense of transparency in an individual’s care trajectory, while emphasizing the importance of determining an outcome in case management. This is what sets Unite Us apart from many other referral and case management workflows.”
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