Hybrid maternity clinic Oula introduced Thursday that it secured $19.1 million in Collection A funding, which is able to permit the corporate to spice up its full-service being pregnant care.
New York Metropolis-based Oula was based by Adrianne Nickerson and Elaine Purcell in 2021 whereas they have been each pregnant. The corporate gives midwifery and obstetrics providers, whether or not it’s for prenatal care, supply or postpartum care. It additionally affords being pregnant and beginning training, digital teaching, neighborhood occasions and an app for assist between appointments. Oula has two clinics positioned in New York Metropolis and is in community with most main insurance coverage suppliers, together with UnitedHealthcare, Blue Cross Blue Defend and Aetna. It additionally accepts Medicaid.
“At Oula, we’re redesigning [maternity care] by bringing collectively one of the best of midwifery and obstetrics to create a way more personalised, evidence-based strategy to care,” Nickerson, CEO of Oula, mentioned in an interview. “Then we layer expertise on high of that to drive accessibility and comfort within the care and eventually, we infuse neighborhood.”
The funding spherical was led by 8VC and included participation from Chelsea Clinton’s fund, Metrodora; the Feminine Founders Fund; Collaborative Fund; and Alumni Ventures. In whole, Oula has raised $22.3 million.
8VC selected to put money into Oula due to the acute progress it’s skilled since opening in 2021, signaling the necessity for maternity care, mentioned Kimmy Scotti, 8VC founding companion. Three months after opening its location, the corporate reached full capability, main Oula to open its second and doubling its worker base.
“Oula’s progress sends a easy however unmistakable message: Maternity care can and should be higher,” Scotti mentioned in a information launch. “Oula’s transformative strategy is just not solely refreshing — it’s desperately wanted.”
With the funding, the corporate is trying to develop in two methods, Nickerson mentioned. It plans to increase its providers by including in-house sonography and psychological well being care. It would additionally work to develop in its New York market to satisfy demand. Oula hopes to increase nationally sooner or later, however it’s not a foremost focus for the corporate proper now, mentioned Purcell, chief working officer of the corporate.
“With 125,000 births in New York Metropolis, that’s a number of market share to go after,” Purcell mentioned. “We really feel like there are much more pregnancies that we are able to impression right here, however we completely have plans to go nationwide.”
Oula’s funding information comes at a time when maternal deaths are on the rise within the U.S. In 2020, the maternal mortality charge was 23.8 deaths per 100,000 births within the U.S., exceeding different high-income nations, in keeping with the Commonwealth Fund. For Black ladies within the U.S., the speed was 55.3 deaths per 100,000 births, almost thrice larger than the maternal mortality charge for White ladies. A big a part of that is the dearth of entry to midwives, who’re licensed and licensed medical practitioners with experience in low-risk pregnancies however are sometimes reimbursed at a decrease charge than physicians, Purcell argued. That’s what Oula is making an attempt to alter by its collaborative mannequin that mixes midwifery and obstetrics.
“Should you have a look at different nations which have, frankly, significantly better maternal well being statistics just like the U,Ok., Netherlands, and so on., there’s actually widespread use of midwives and there’s actually nice entry to them,” Purcell mentioned. “In america … there simply aren’t good fee mechanisms for midwives. A part of what Oula is making an attempt to deal with is ensuring that we’re getting paid for this actually prime quality care.”