HoyHealth CEO on providing equal care for all patients

Mario Anglada, CEO of HoyHealth, attends Yahoo Finance Live to discuss tackling equity in healthcare.
Video transcript
- Welcome back. Our health reporter Anjalee Khemlani is here with a conversation with Mario Anglada, CEO of HoyHealth. They talk about health inequalities in minority communities, telemedicine and more. Hello Anjalee.
ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Hey, Kristin. Thanks a lot for this. And welcome, Mario, to the show. There's a lot to talk about as health equity is really a key issue right now with the Biden administration putting an emphasis on it, but also on what we saw as the aftermath of the pandemic. And I know your company was closely involved in the response there.
First, let's talk about the journey that originally started as a real opportunity for individuals in the Latin American community, the Hispanic community, to buy medicines for family members in other countries, but has now expanded to a lot more, including the remote monitoring devices that are so big . So walk me through this and how it was in terms of interest during the pandemic.
MARIO ANGLADA: First of all, thank you very much for the time this afternoon. And you are absolutely right. We started our company with a focus on helping underserved medical communities wherever they live. But the starting point was, I have family members across the border in Mexico, Central America. What happens to communities that have this type of relationship is they send remittances overseas and take care of family members with economic support from the United States.
So we started our journey there. You can buy medicines on our site. We deliver within two hours to Central American capitals and within 24 hours to any location in the countries in which we operate. So we started there. And then we quickly saw that when the pandemic started restricting freedom of movement, one of the things we had already developed but not yet implemented was our telemedicine and remote patient monitoring ecosystem.
With the onset of the pandemic, telemedicine will become all the more important. And we started, and we got an agreement and partnership with Verizon Wireless to offer this to their members as a benefit specifically for Verizon customers, with what HoyHealth brings to the table.
On the flip side, our healthcare customers have recognized the need to monitor patients remotely, and luckily we have a networked system that does all three. So during the pandemic we were able to quickly move devices and use them in homes, including cell phones, blood glucose meters, pulse oximeters, a whole range of around 14 different devices that would help our customer base with their monitoring of patients in a truly supportive environment, in the patient receives our team, uses our solutions in the clinic and at home. And from that point on, we are the eyes and ears of the health workers in the community. All of our clients who started this journey have expanded quite dramatically.
ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Absolutely. So let's talk about it. Because I know that when you talk about getting this support, it wasn't an easy path. What did you see was the response to something that clearly responded to calls for health justice, especially minorities, during the pandemic? I know that you looked at the market back then. What you saw?
MARIO ANGLADA: What we saw was a lot of opportunity to get in touch with the churches. But it was a fragmented engagement. And the challenge is, if you are underserved, you won't need any of these things. You will likely need all three of these. So it took a while before we had partners in mind who understood that if you cared for all three, the patient, the family, the core group would be supported. And that then leads to a better health outcome for the patient, a better commitment to the healthcare provider. And ultimately, it's a societal benefit because remember that the underserved medical communities in the United States have over 138 million people. So we are talking about 36% of the population with the challenges just described.
ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Does it feel like the financial part, has it gotten easier over time? And is it because - and is it the pandemic, or do you still meet people who don't fully understand what you are doing and how it contributes to health equity?
MARIO ANGLADA: Historically, yes. Not now. The pandemic has accelerated a lot. Conversion cycles or discussions, hey we really care what you do, but we're going to put it on hold. And we'll start in about 24 months. Now it's ready and how soon can we test it? Everything is a pilot in healthcare. So you have to pilot, prove, and then scale. So historically you are absolutely right.
In the short term, we see that many of our customers do not have the financial burden that is placed on them because of commitments such as the FCC grants for remote patient monitoring. And that was a role of the administration supporting this commitment to rural health and remote patient monitoring. What we see now is a very accelerated path to introduction.
And luckily for us, if we work with color communities and can focus on very vulnerable groups in language and culture, then the next question that many of our customers ask is: Who can you do this for? Our answer is, if we can communicate with you in two languages, we could usually do so in three or four languages. And we are starting to expand our offering away from the original focus of the Latino. And because of this, we are speeding up our business as we speak.
ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Well, very quickly, it has to do with insurance in part, right? We have seen this surge in reimbursement for telemedicine services and other things. Do you now also see the interest of insurers or do you still rely on a cash-based system?
MARIO ANGLADA: No, we support our consumers wherever they need it. So if you have insurance, we will work with your insurance carrier. When you pay cash, we make sure you have a solution out of your pocket that you can afford. And we will always work with our patients.
During the pandemic, we saw - and we were fortunate enough to already have our first national contract with an HMO - that the payer system recognized that this was the future. And now they're sponsoring pilots and projects to prove the case. And when you see the results, the results speak for themselves. And I can tell you that because in our conversations with one of our greatest partners, the Mayo Clinic, they are giving us signals that say: Hey, this will stay. And we think that this is the culmination of a very fast moving wave into the house. And we're working with Mayo and others to make that happen.
So historically we have had challenges. Now we see that there is strong tailwind for the particular success we have shown in very vulnerable communities. And if you can do it there, it can work for everyone else.
ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Absolutely. Well, we will definitely continue to watch how this all plays out. HoyHealth CEO, Mario Anglada, thank you for joining us today. Kristin, back to you.
- All right. Thank you Anjalee for bringing us this interview.

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