WSJ: Healthcare unicorn misled advertisers

Frank
May 15, 2018
82 Views

unicorn, origami

Outcome Health’s profile has grown significantly in the past year with a $500 million fundraise, a $5.5 billion valuation, and a plan to hire 2,000 employees in the next few years housed at “Outcome Tower” in its hometown of Chicago. But an article in The Wall Street Journal this week has raised questions about the company, which installs screens in doctors’ offices with educational healthcare content and generates revenue from advertising, particularly from pharma companies.

Citing former employees, the article reported that the company “used inflated data to measure how well ads performed, created documents that inaccurately verified that ads ran on certain doctors’ screens and manipulated third-party analyses showing the effectiveness of the ads, according to some of these people and documents”.

Three employees were put on paid leave, amidst an investigation by the company, the article noted.

The article also noted that the paper’s review didn’t find any information demonstrating the involvement of top-level executives to mislead advertisers.

For its part, a spokesman for Outcome Health (formerly known as ContextMedia) emailed a link to a statement posted on the company’s website from Outcome Health Founder and CEO Rishi Shah in response to the WSJ article.

Among the “recent steps” listed in the statement are:

Hiring Winston & Strawn’s Executive Chairman Dan Webb to review any concerns raised about the past conduct of certain employees.

“Based on the findings of this review, we will take strong, decisive and appropriate action,” Shah said.

If the company learns that a customer was misled, Shah said it will share that promptly with the customer and remedy the situation immediately.

He told The Wall Street Journal in an email that it has had growing pains “as every high growth company does” as it’s scaled from 4,000 to 40,000 doctors’ offices.

Although Outcome Health plans to add 2,000 more jobs by 2022, the company laid off at least 76 staff last month, according to the article.

Photo: WinsomeMan, Getty Images

Frank’s source: https://medcitynews.com/2017/10/wsj-article-asserts-healthcare-unicorn-used-misleading-advertising-data/

 

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