Wellvana Health Completes Initial Capital Financing to Build High-Performance Physician Networks

As Published in BusinessWire, October 31st, 2018

Wellvana, a clinically integrated network, announced the completion of their initial financing of over $4.5 million of equity capital. Wellvana is founded and financed by healthcare executive and entrepreneur, Charlie Martin and several prominent San Antonio physician leaders, including Salah Jaafar, MD and Jairo Melo, MD. Most recently, Martin was the Founder, Chairman and CEO of Vanguard Health Systems, which owned San Antonio’s Baptist Health System, before Tenet Healthcare Corporation acquired Vanguard in October of 2013 for more than $4.3 billion. After the sale to Tenet, Martin started Martin Ventures, focused on investing in companies that improve the health of individuals and populations through innovative technologies and services.

Wellvana is a high-performance clinically integrated physician network, focused on providing more people with the right care, in the right care setting, at the right price. Wellvana has brought together a select group of talented primary care physicians and specialists, who are working together to provide high quality coordinated care with an optimal user experience.

“The current healthcare system works just as designed, but there is a basic design flaw. The financial incentives are not directly tied to providing patient care only when it’s clinically appropriate, integrated, and of the highest quality. We are simply nibbling around the edges of care transformation until we align convenience, outcomes and cost for the user,” said Martin. “Wellvana does exactly that. Wellvana focuses on aligning all its providers to deliver high-quality care to the patient, when care is needed.”

Martin added, “the promise of Wellvana is strong physician leadership, specifically physicians who can partner with primary care providers and specialists they know and trust. Wellvana is in San Antonio because we understand the market well from our experience operating Baptist Health System, and we chose San Antonio because of the top talent, independent physician leaders.”

“Quality has become a healthcare buzzword,” said Dr. Jairo Melo, Co-Founder, Investor, and Chief Medical Officer for Wellvana. “We believe quality is created when physicians hold one another accountable to measurable performance standards. This is the bedrock of Wellvana’s clinically integrated network. We are a group of physicians practicing at the top of our specialties, dedicated to providing the best care to our patients.”

“Wellvana is standardizing quality measures across a network of high-performance independent clinicians, said Dr. Salah Jaafar, Co-Founder, Investor, and Physician Partner. “These clinicians are not employed. They each joined Wellvana because they believe this is a better way to provide care for their patients.”

Wellvana plans to start offering its network immediately to employers within the San Antonio geographic region. Self-insured employers, large or small, are at-risk for their employee’s health benefits. Employers want to see happy, healthy employees working, not lost within the healthcare system. Additionally, employers have only seen healthcare costs rise. Wellvana is focused on bending that cost curve while simultaneously improving outcomes, cost and experience.

“We have an incredible group of high quality physician partners and investors,” said Michael Platek, CEO of Wellvana. “Their commitment to Wellvana is a critical step in creating a healthcare offering with quality incentives directly tied to providing patient care when it’s clinically appropriate, integrated, and of the highest quality. Our growth strategy is focused on attracting strong physicians motivated to lead improvements in healthcare. By empowering these physicians with technology, benchmarks and accountability, we will provide lower cost healthcare with better outcomes, and ultimately healthier communities. Creating a truly high-performing network requires hard work, passionate and committed providers, and a very focused set of goals. We believe Wellvana will be a tremendous asset to the San Antonio employer community, as well as creating a much needed and desirable resource to the providers in the community.”

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Jordan Lipson