On-demand medical transport startup RoundTrip closes $1.9 million seed round - Technical.ly Philly

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Mar. 29, 2018 10:31 am

On-demand medical transport startup RoundTrip closes $1.9 million seed round

Investors include Ben Franklin Technology Partners and Johns Hopkins University.

RoundTrip's team on a snowy day outside WeWork NoLibs.

(Courtesy photo)

More news from the realLIST ’18 cohort: NoLibs-based RoundTrip, a startup using tech to connect patients with medical transportation options, has closed a $1.9 million seed round.

The capital will let the company, which currently offers its services in 15 states across the Northeast, expand its sales, marketing and tech teams. It currently employs the equivalent of 19 full-timers out of WeWork’s Northern Liberties location, and looks to get that number to 24 over the next three months.

“We’ve expanded to 15 states but we’re not yet fully exploring them,” said CEO Mark Switaj. “There’s even opportunity within our current hospital networks to expand to other programs.”

Investors in the round include Ben Franklin Technology Partners and three supporters of the M-1 Ventures accelerator for connected health and fitness startups: Baltimore’s Abell Foundation, investment management firm Brown Advisory and Johns Hopkins University. RoundTrip was part of that program’s inaugural cohort.

“RoundTrip’s potential stems from a business model that is built to scale, and we’re looking forward to watching the roll out of the platform,” said Brian Stansky, a senior director of Johns Hopkins’ entrepreneurship and incubation efforts.

RoundTrip first caught our attention in 2017 when it joined Philly Startup Leader’s 2017 accelerator program. It followed that up by partnering with Lyft as its official ridesharing provider. Last October, we spotted CTO Ankit Mathur pitching (and winning) at the regional finals of the 17776 Challenge Cup.

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Switaj, a Boston College and Georgetown University alum who lives in Center City, said the next year or two could see RoundTrip double the number of states where it operates. But he also wants the company, founded in 2016 to expand its offering beyond just healthcare visits.

“It’s equally important that our product can create more value,” said Switaj, 35. Adding features like pharmacy stops after doctor’s appointments is the goal.

“Building out that tech is where we’re headed next,” the founder said.

So how is using RoundTrip different than patients just ordering rides by themselves? Well, first big difference is that RoundTrip’s system deals with a whole slate of vehicle providers: think ambulances, sure, but also specialty vehicles for people who use wheelchairs. It also allows for different payers (Medicaid/Medicare, patients themselves, private insurance) to be billed within the same platform.

Here’s what ordering transportation looks like:

A case study to illustrate this is a chemotherapy patient, who frequently needs to go to a medical center several times a week at a specific time to receive treatment. Some facilities have grant money to cover transportation costs, and RoundTrip might ease access to resources like those.

“We want transportation to be an afterthought for patients,” said Switaj. “It’s such a barrier for people to improve their health and it shouldn’t be.”

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