BackTable / Innovation / Podcast / Episode #56
The Charm of Startups: The Economics of Healthcare Innovation
with Adam Block, Ph.D
In this episode, host Dr. Eric Gantwerker interviews Adam Block, a health economist, public health professor, and founder of Charm Economics, an economic consulting company for medical technology businesses.
BackTable, LLC (Producer). (2023, July 28). Ep. 56 – The Charm of Startups: The Economics of Healthcare Innovation [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from https://www.backtable.com
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Adam Block, Ph.D
Adam Block is a health economist, public health professor, and founder of Charm Economics, an economic consulting company for medical technology businesses..
Dr. Eric Gantwerker
Eric Gantwerker is a Pediatric Otolaryngologist at Cohen Children's Hospital at Northwell Health/Hofstra, Associate Professor of Otolaryngology at Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell, and Vice President, Medical Director at Level Ex.
Adam originally intended to go to medical school; however, his true passion for economics emerged during college. He served as a consultant at Blue Cross Blue Shield and pursued a PhD in Health Economics during the 2008 recession and the Obama administration’s healthcare reform. Adam then headed to Capitol Hill, where he contributed to the drafting of sections of the Affordable Care Act. He has also worked within a variety of healthcare companies such as Fidelis, a Medicaid managed care organization, and Montefiore, a leading force in transforming Medicaid into a value-based care model.
Adam provides some background into the new wave of healthcare technologies. During the COVID pandemic, Telehealth technologies experienced significant progress and development. Medicare's decision to cover virtual visits proved highly successful, since it offered patients who faced challenges with transportation or childcare the opportunity to receive necessary care. As the pandemic unfolded, Telehealth evolved into a versatile solution that could be accessed at any time and location. It also brought exciting opportunities for those serving in healthcare quality improvement roles, as well as tech companies seeking to create new devices and services.
Finally, Adam speaks about founding Charm Economics, a company that specializes in development of financial models for digital health firms. Their expertise lies in identifying value propositions and strategies to reduce care costs and enhance turnover within these propositions. For startups seeking venture capitalist funds, Block advises them to first identify who their target investor is and to showcase a clear and focused path to the desired outcome of creating value. He also emphasizes the importance of maintaining communication with mid-level managers who can advocate for the product and help sell it to target buyers.
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