Healthcare veteran Steve Auerbach joins DTx innovator Sidekick as executive chairman
Boston/Berlin/Reykjavik, June xx, 2021 – European digital therapeutics (DTx) innovator Sidekick Health has appointed Steven G. Auerbach as the company’s executive chairman in a move to accelerate its US entry and to meet growing demand from US-based payers.
“DTx and digital care innovators like Sidekick have the ability to solve long-standing problems and challenges. Now is the time for payers to partner with DTx players and to adopt new technologies, reposition themselves at the center of healthcare, and empower patients to take control of their own health by delivering care into their homes,” Auerbach said.
Sidekick was founded in 2014 by two medical doctors. The company's sharpest focus has been on collaborating with international pharmaceutical majors to augment pharmacotherapy of marketed medicines, to develop combination therapies consisting of a drug and a DTx, and to create stand-alone DTx products.
“The healthcare landscape has shifted significantly in the last 12 months as a direct result of the pandemic, accelerating the wider adoption and demand for digital health solutions. This includes an increasing demand from US-based payers,” said Sidekick chief executive officer and co-founder, Dr. Tryggvi Thorgeirsson.
“Steven is uniquely qualified to join Sidekick at this stage in our growth, and I look forward to welcoming his expertise and input as we take the company to the next level and position Sidekick as the preferred digital care partner with US health insurance leaders,” Thorgeirsson added.
Auerbach brings over 25 years of experience in the field of healthcare benefits; he has served as the chief executive of Alegeus and the president of Connextions. Auerbach has also held senior leadership positions with UnitedHealth Group, ChannelPoint, and Cigna.
As the executive vice-president of provider and member operations at UnitedHealth Group, Auerbach oversaw 15,000 professionals, providing service to more than 25 million consumers and 650,000 physicians.
With a proven track record of driving organizational growth by offering differentiated value, providing excellent customer service, and outstanding consumer experiences, Auerbach is well-positioned to support Sidekick as the company advances into the US market.
Earlier this year, he joined the board of directors of leading Medicare and health insurance sales and marketing organization, HPOne.
“Sidekick understands that meaningful and lasting lifestyle change requires behavior modification, targeted support, education, and incentives. Their extensive range of digital care programs not only improve patient well-being and outcomes, but they also offer substantial value to both payers and providers. Sidekick has a bright future ahead, and I want to use my experience and industry knowledge to help them get there,” Auerbach added.
Last year, Sidekick closed an oversubscribed financing round led by Wellington Partners and ASABYS Partners, with participation by existing investors Novator and Frumtak Ventures.
Sidekick was founded by two medical doctors - Dr. Tryggvi Thorgeirsson and Dr. Saemundur Oddsson - who had worked for years treating tens of thousands of patients with lifestyle-related illnesses. A staggering 68% of all deaths are due to lifestyle-related illnesses and the two co-founders, frustrated with dealing with the consequences, realized that a new approach was needed to prevent and manage chronic illnesses. The company operates a patient-centric, digital care platform - delivering industry-leading retention and clinically proven positive impact on health outcomes, ranging from weight and blood glucose to quality of life and medication adherence. The Sidekick platform combines an evidence-based clinical approach with behavioral economics and gamification to help global customers expand therapy reach. It is CE-marked as a Class I Medical Device and is scalable to over 40 distinct chronic diseases, 13 of which are live in 2021. Sidekick’s platform has also been adopted to remotely triage and support people in home isolation, diagnosed with COVID-19. In addition to supporting COVID-19 patients, the remote patient monitoring solution of the wider Sidekick platform is now being used in Europe and the US, to support patients with other conditions.
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