‘The darkest, most bottomless pit in healthcare’: Goodbill raises $3.4M to deal with health care billing

Patrick Haig and Ian Sefferman, co-founders of Goodbill. (Photos through LinkedIn)

If you dare, consider looking on the net for “hospital bill nightmares.” The question will yield website page soon after webpage of terrifying, outrageous stories.

Healthcare billing, mentioned Patrick Haig, “is the darkest, most bottomless pit in healthcare.”

But perhaps it doesn’t have to be. Haig and Ian Sefferman are co-founders of Goodbill, a Seattle startup that they established previous summer months to shine a gentle into that pit, illuminating expenses and encouraging clients unearth and dispute billing problems.

To get the endeavor started out, the duo final month introduced a a lot more easy assistance.

Since Jan. 15, personal insurers have been essential by the Biden Administration to go over the prices of up to 8 COVID-19 rapid assessments for each subscriber for every month. But even with mandated protection, Goodbill’s founders assumed they could participate in a part.

“We understood that distributing statements to your insurer is never really that effortless or pleasing,” Haig reported.

So Goodbill has a free of charge software that tends to make it straightforward for individuals recuperate the price tag of the examination kits.

The workforce experienced been constructing elements of the device for their larger mission, and observed the possibility to assist customers in the in close proximity to time period even though elevating the startup’s profile. Hundreds of individuals have made use of the web page to submit their statements.

And Goodbill has attracted the notice of the enterprise capital local community as well, raising $3.4 million in December.

The seed round was led by Founders’ Co-op with investments from Maveron and Liquid 2 Ventures. Goodbill angel investors include Christian Sutherland-Wong, CEO of Glassdoor Dan Yoo, previous chief operations officer of Nerdwallet David Hahn, previous main product or service officer of Instacart Dr. Aasim Saeen, CEO of Amenity.Wellness Greg Rudin of Menlo Ventures and Nick Soman, CEO of Good.

Anarghya Vardhana, a companion with Maveron, shared a personal tale by way of Twitter to reveal her assist for the business.

“After a 6-determine monthly bill sticker shock write-up-supply of my daughter Toddler in the spring of 2020 (hi pandemic little one), I was on a mission to discover a firm that could, at scale, avert this from occurring to everyone else,” Vardhana tweeted.

Goodbill’s merchandise for disputing healthcare bills will turn out to be readily available in North Carolina this spring.

The platform will offer you a free of charge, solely automated evaluate of healthcare facility expenditures and estimate of faults, as nicely as support in which Goodbill does a specific review of payments in comparison with a patient’s digital clinical information to explore issues.

For the much more thorough procedure, a billing coder will assessment the rates and Goodbill will send information and faxes to clinic evaluation groups to dispute the costs. The startup will take part in negotiating a corrected, closing invoice, and cost individuals a “small percentage” of any discounts they understand. Many of the techniques will be automated, like the original invoice overview and sending basic communications, whilst some will be done manually.

Haig claimed it was a terrific time to launch the effort because a lot more healthcare pricing knowledge is publicly obtainable and people today have a lot easier access to digital patient documents.

Sample Goodbill interface. (Goodbill Graphic)

The startup will go on introducing locations in excess of time, with the intention of spreading nationwide. They assume the desire will be there. A study by LendingTree located that 37% of People have professional medical financial debt, and that most sufferers who negotiated their expenses experienced their fees lowered or dropped.

Haig and Sefferman would like to generate added resources to support make healthcare charges more transparent, sharing information and facts about what unique hospitals and health care systems are charging for techniques and solutions and individual comments. They are imagining a web page like Glassdoor in which recent and previous staff members article anonymous corporation opinions and share salary details.

Other people offering info on healthcare costs contain Fair Wellness, a free assistance presenting a range of estimates for healthcare strategies, and fee-dependent Healthcare Bluebook. Washington inhabitants can use the state’s absolutely free Washington HealthCareCompare web-site to study cost details by company for prevalent treatments.

Organizations featuring monthly bill dispute solutions and individual advocacy include things like CoPatient, WellRithms and AdvimedPro.

Sefferman and Haig beforehand teamed up to make MobileDevHQ, a startup that helped application consumers improve their arrive at. The business was acquired in 2014 by Seattle’s Tune, which by itself was obtained in 2020. The pair remaining Seattle in 2018 to launch a startup studio in Detroit, Sefferman’s hometown. Haig has considering the fact that returned to Seattle, and the two are now centered on Goodbill.

“When we started off doing the job in healthcare, it was like, wow, this is unbelievably significant function.” Sefferman stated. “And if we can do everything to set a tiny dent in the universe and make it just a tiny bit greater, that’s definitely worthwhile work to do.”