Accel leads $22.8M Series A in Swedish telehealth startup, KRY

Swedish digital healthcare startup KRY has closed a €20 million ($22.8M) Series A round of funding to grow its on-demand video-call-a-doctor business, including expanding into new markets. Existing investors Index Ventures, Creandum and Project A also participated in the round.

The startup, which was founded in 2014, aims to supplement traditional healthcare systems with an on-demand (paid) service for patients wanting fast and convenient access to a doctor when they don’t need a full physical examination. (Which does beg the question what the doctor in the above promo photo will be doing with the stethoscope that’s draped over his shoulders… )

Its pitch is that KRY reduces pressure on highly strained healthcare systems by offering a “more accessible and convenient digital consultation service”, by allowing patients to get a video-based consultation from the comfort of their home, using KRY’s app.

As well as talking through their symptoms with a doctor during the video consultation, patients are asked to input information about their condition into KRY’s iOS or Android app beforehand — including uploading relevant pictures and responding to symptom-specific questions.

After a consultation has taken place, KRY says patients’ medical information is recorded in the local Electronic Medical Records system. In Sweden it notes that certain information can be shared with the patient’s regular GP through the publicly run system for patient overview.

“Where this is not possible, patients who wish to share their record from KRY with another healthcare provider may request a copy of the record, in line with national regulations,” it adds.

The service launched in Sweden in March 2015 and expanded to Norway and Spain in February 2017. It now has more than 100,000 users across its market footprint, with video appointments generally available between 7am-midnight, with “some local variations”.

Consultations cost 250 Swedish Krona (around £25/$31) per video session. During a video call,  patients may receive prescriptions for medication, advice, referral to a specialist, or lab or home tests with a follow-up appointment. Prescribed medication and home tests can also be delivered straight to the patient’s home — KRY says within two hours.

In Sweden, where KRY says it employs more than 200 doctors, it claims it serves more than 1 per cent of all primary healthcare in the country.

Initially, it says patients typically used the service for medical advice about skin conditions, UTIs, eye infections and to get prescription renewals. But since integrating with lab-test referrals it says its doctors can now handle 60 per cent of the “100 most common diagnosis in the primary healthcare system”.

“KRY uses symptom forms with standardised questions as part of the booking process to ensure that crucial information is always available to the doctor. Relevant guidelines and recommendations are available to doctors prior to and during patient meetings directly in the doctor’s user interface, and a decision support in line with best practice is integrated for certain symptoms,” it tells TechCrunch.

“In cases where a physical examination is required for diagnosis, the patient receives a referral to the appropriate healthcare provider.”

KRY further notes that its doctors only can access patients’ medical records via the local EMR system. “Other KRY employees cannot access this information, as patient data is not stored on the KRY platform,” it adds.

KRY says its Series A-powered expansion will “primarily” focus on adding more European markets, though it’s not specifying exactly where as yet.