Ann Arbor-Based Telehealth Addiction Treatment Company Workit Health Secures Series A Funding

By Amit Chowdhry ● Feb 2, 2019

Workit Health, an Ann Arbor, Michigan-based telehealth addiction treatment company that brings affordable evidence-backed care for individuals, employers, and healthcare organizations, has raised a Series A investment led by Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners. This funding round included participation from Endeavor Catalyst and existing investors Montage Ventures, Lux Capital, Wakestream Ventures, Invest Detroit, and RRE Ventures.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners’ investment in Workit Health was strategic as the health insurance company will help the startup expand its addiction treatment programs across the U.S. Workit’s Clinic program is currently one of the few providers of telehealth medication for opioid use disorder.

“The stakes couldn’t be higher as the overdose epidemic continues across the U.S.,” said Workit co-founder Lisa McLaughlin in a statement. “For too long, we’ve relied on all-or-nothing, abstinence-based treatment. Workit’s combination of convenient, mobile-first, patient-led design solutions paired with a disruptively low cost enables more individuals to receive treatment than ever before. Our work with payors shows better outcomes, translating to material cost savings, meaning everyone wins.”

Opioid overdose is now considered a greater risk to Americans than dying in a car crash. However, only 30% of treatment centers in the U.S. offer medication such as buprenorphine for opioid addiction.

“Blue Cross Blue Shield Companies lead the way in delivering access to innovative, cost-effective care, keeping client needs front and center,” added Workit co-founder Robin McIntosh. “A partnership naturally evolved from this shared value set, and our Workit Health team is looking forward to working together and delivering the results we currently offer at scale — translating to meaningful outcomes for members, and a return on investment for health plans.”

Buprenorphine is only one out of three medications proven to reduce risk of overdose and relapse. Workit Health’s Clinic program offers low-barrier buprenorphine treatment via telehealth after a single in-person visit. Workit members follow up through video with their clinician and can message their recovery coach 24/7. Plus they can work through a personalized curriculum of courses tailored for their self-set recovery goals.

“At Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners, we are committed to investing in organizations like Workit Health that are positively disrupting the healthcare industry. Workit’s clinical model and program analytics allow for better outcomes at lower costs,” explained Sandbox Industries (exclusive provider of investment management services to the Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners managing director Mike Spadafore. “Workit Health distinguishes itself from other addiction treatment by bringing cost-effective, evidence-based solutions to those who need them most, at the moment they choose to find help.”