Hero is a healthcare startup company that has raised $12 million in Series A funding led by Brainchild Holdings. Naval Ravikant, Box Group, Third Kind Venture Capital, and Refactor Capital also participated in this round of funding. Hero empowers caregivers with medication management. The company also announced its public launch in the U.S. this week with a device called the Hero.
The Hero device is an automated in-home system that was in development and testing for about four years before it was deployed. And the Hero’s interface includes real-time notifications to assure caregivers that their loved ones have the right medications and that they are being taken at the right time.
This is considered the first and only in-home medication manager device that is able to dispense and sort medication. Refills are automated and data is provided in real-time. The Hero is passcode-protected and rests ergonomically on countertops. It eliminates pre-sorting while automatically storing, dispensing, tracking, reminding, and ordering refills based on doses remaining and/or medication expiration. And the Hero app is available for iOS and Android. Plus there is a Hero Fill Service Option that prompts and manages the delivery of prescription medication and over-the-counter medication with no extra charge for the delivery.
Hero founder and CEO Kal Vepuri was inspired to build the company in order to help his mother who is a primary care physician struggling to adhere to a complex medication regimen following a severe cardiac procedure.
“Hero has been a personal journey for me. No pill box, pill dispenser, app, mailorder provider, nursing care service or combination thereof improved my mother’s adherence over time,” said Vepuri. “I felt helpless in improving her well-being, happiness, and sense of independence. It felt like I had failed at caring for the most important person in my life.”
As Vepuri researched the idea, he learned that millions of families were dealing with similar frustrations due to the lack of solutions to such a stressful problem. From there, Vepuri utilized his engineering skills to help those suffering from chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, depression, and cancer.
The National Institute of Health says that hundreds of billions of dollars in annual costs and more than 1 million hospital visits every year are attributable to nonadherence. And it accounts for more than 10% of all emergency room hospitalizations. More than 125,000 Americans die per year as a result of this pervasive problem.
How much does the Hero cost? “The system is being offered with a subscription plan. It can be purchased for as low as $19.95 per month for two years (and $9.99 per month, thereafter) or for $299.00 plus a one-year pre-paid subscription (valued at $120),” says the company in a statement.