Healthcare community Doximity goes public
San Francisco-based Doximity, which describes itself as the largest community of healthcare professionals in the country — with more than 80 percent of U.S. doctors and 50 percent of all nurse practitioners, physician assistants and medical students as verified members — says that its professional medical network has a larger membership than the American Medical Association. Doximity specializes in providing digital tools to connect doctors with colleagues and patients. Recently, Doximity went public, raising $600 million in IPO, including $81.8 million in private funding from investors.
Co-founder Dr. Nate Gross said, “We are excited to share that over 10,000 physicians participated in the IPO buying shares, and that’s tremendously important to us to be able to share our success with our physician members. In general, this IPO is an exciting opportunity — it allows us to continue to invest in serving doctors, continue to invest in building out new things to help clients that we work with, and it really increases our financial flexibility.”
He added, “Our proceeds will mainly be used for working capital to keep funding our growth and invest in some exciting new areas. We think there’s just a lot of things we can continue to do to improve the way doctors are able to get their day-to-day jobs done. If we do that, we’re simultaneously serving the patients which includes all of our loved ones.”
The company, which began in 2010, was known as the “LinkedIn for doctors,” providing a digital platform for medical professionals. With the pandemic making virtual visits and immediate access critical, Doximity added video services in 2020.
To date, the healthcare social network has grown to more than 1.8 million members. The company believes that when the entire care coordination team is connected, “patients benefit and the medical sector can work more efficiently and have a bigger impact.” Doximity’s “clinician-first” mentality enables the company to listen to the needs of clinicians and motivates it to build simple, easy-to-use tools to solve complex problems.
Because clinicians are mobile by nature, Doximity created a suite of tools taking that into account. Clinicians can send and receive electronic faxes conveniently while on the go, securely collaborate on patient treatment when on call, call patients a cell phone while displaying the office number and set up video conferences. With Doximity, you can be more productive and efficient without sacrificing convenience. Doximity solves everyday challenges unique to clinicians by putting the tools they already use conveniently in one place and in a format that simplifies their usage.
Doximity put together a team that includes health tech leaders from institutions and employers such as Cleveland Clinic, Stanford University, UCSF and Medscape. CEO Jeff Tangney previously founded Epocrates (EPOC), and co-founder Dr. Nate Gross previously founded Rock Health, the first venture fund for digital health. Industry thought leaders serve on the advisory board, and healthcare-focused investors include Emergence Capital Partners, InterWest Partners, T. Rowe Price and Morgan Stanley.
The company has poured substantial resources into telehealth, an area that saw significant growth during the pandemic, according to Gross. “We’re going to continue to invest substantially in telehealth, and that’s one of the reasons why we’re excited about going public — to have the growth and opportunity to be able to do that,” he said.
The company had about 100,000 clinicians before the pandemic using its telehealth suite in aggregate, and just in the last quarter, there were more than 300,000 clinicians using the telehealth tools. As COVID made telehealth more important in 2020, Doximity heeded the call to enable practitioners to practice telemedicine in minutes by dialing a patient’s number to start a video call. As Doximity members had to cope with the pandemic, the network provided information on all aspects of the coronavirus crisis that touch physicians, from workflow considerations to research vetting to stress management. It made the system easy to use while practicing in ever-changing settings.
According to company literature, Dialer Video is a simple telemedicine tool that enables physicians to video-call their patients in a reliable and a secure way from their own smartphones. It has the same ease of use and reliability of Doximity Dialer, the original connection tool, but upgraded to video. Users do not need to download software or install an app. When the doctor is ready to start a phone call, the patient will receive a text message to opt into the call. The patient is immediately “in the room” with the doctor. Calls are HIPAA compliant, encrypted and private.
As Gross explained, “Our physicians expect to be leveraging telemedicine. These groups are looking to continue to care for patients with non-COVID-19 conditions — their cancer and their heart disease and their respiratory disease. They’re looking to harness the learnings from this pandemic to help those patients have a better experience in this new world. We believe this is a structural shift in how care will be delivered moving forward. And absolutely, thanks to our penetration in the physician market, I believe Doximity is extremely well positioned to help.”
Gross believes that the health system is fragmented, making it difficult to navigate. Thus, people have trouble finding the resources they need. Doximity offers really precise referrals to just the right specialist meeting all the right criteria.
Gross also explained that Doximity uses data science to keep medical professionals up to date on new research in their fields. As he said, “There are 30,000 new medical research articles published every week. That’s great for scientific progress, but that’s pretty overwhelming for doctors to keep up with it all. Our newsfeeds use data science to scan those articles and to match the news and research to each doctor’s clinical interest. We believe if we can separate signal from noise here, then doctors can keep abreast of what they need to know to stay up to date and be the best at their niche of medicine, and that helps patients ensure that they’re always getting the highest standard of care.”