Boston-based hybrid care provider knownwell launched with $4.5 million in seed funding led by Flare Capital Partners.
Brynn Putnam of Mirror, an in-home fitness platform acquired by lululemon; Lydia Gilbert of women’s plus-size clothing company Dia & Co; Varsha Rao of home health provider Nurx; Flybridge LTV Operator Fund; Oxeon; and Larry Summers also contributed funding.
knownwell describes itself as an inclusive healthcare company for anyone of any size. It offers metabolic health services, primary care, nutrition counseling and behavioral health services.
“As a patient affected by obesity, I always thought I was the only one who dreaded an unhelpful lecture by my doctor who didn’t take my concerns seriously – but after research, I found most Americans experience the same stigma and I knew I found my life’s purpose,” Brooke Boyarsky Pratt, CEO and cofounder of knownwell, said in a statement.
“I’m proud to bring together highly trained physicians, providers, and staff who are excited to partner with patients on their wellness journey – whether that includes changing their body size or not.”
THE LARGER TREND
Patients with obesity may receive suboptimal care as “several decades of evidence demonstrate consistent weight bias expressed by healthcare providers, which can impair quality of care to patients with obesity and diabetes,” according to Clinical Diabetes.
Other providers focusing on particular communities include Serena Williams-backed Juno Medical, which provides individual and family care, wellness, specialty care, and on-site labs and imaging services to historically marginalized communities.
Folx Health offers virtual healthcare services for the LGBTQ+ community. The company launched in late 2020, providing hormone replacement therapy for transgender patients. It later added sexual health offerings as well as a virtual care platform geared toward general health and primary care.
Other organizations include virtual specialty care company Oak Street Health, which offers a chain of primary care clinics geared toward the Medicare population; Plume, a startup focused on virtual care for transgender patients; and Tia, a women’s health-focused hybrid care provider.