Technology Healthcare-focused startup secures $50M from General Catalyst and A16z...

Healthcare-focused startup secures $50M from General Catalyst and A16z to build generative AI


Healthcare startup Hippocratic AI has emerged with $50 million in funding to develop a groundbreaking large language model (LLM) tailored specifically for healthcare applications. The company aims to improve patient safety, enhance healthcare access, and optimize outcomes by leveraging the power of generative AI technology. Hippocratic AI’s unique approach focuses on non-diagnostic, patient-facing applications to ensure patient well-being.

Munjal Shah, co-founder of Hippocratic AI and a seasoned entrepreneur, expressed excitement about the paradigm shift that generative AI brings to healthcare. The startup’s mission is to leverage language models to significantly increase healthcare access, reduce costs, and bridge the healthcare skills gap exacerbated by the global pandemic.

By embracing the concept of “healthcare maximalism,” Hippocratic AI aims to elevate the level of care by providing services that were previously inaccessible. The company envisions a future where every individual has access to their own free dietitian and the overall quality of healthcare outcomes improves. Meenesh Bhimani, co-founder and Chief Medical Officer of Hippocratic AI, highlighted the potential of AI to augment the healthcare workforce, reduce burnout, and enable healthcare professionals to connect with patients in new ways.

To build a robust and safe LLM, Hippocratic AI brought together a team of physicians, hospital administrators, Medicare professionals, and AI researchers from renowned institutions such as El Camino Health, Johns Hopkins, and Google. The startup’s focus goes beyond passing traditional medical certification exams; they aim to develop a commercial model explicitly tailored for healthcare applications.

Hippocratic AI conducted extensive testing on a wide range of healthcare certifications and roles, surpassing the performance of existing language models such as GPT-4 in 105 out of 114 tests. The company also pioneered a novel benchmark to measure the bedside manner of large language models, recognizing the importance of empathy and compassion in healthcare interactions.

By utilizing Reinforcement Learning with Human Feedback (RLHF), Hippocratic AI incorporates input from healthcare professionals to guide and train their LLM. This approach ensures that each unique role and its corresponding LLM are evaluated and deemed ready and safe for deployment by the professionals who currently perform those tasks.

Hippocratic AI aims to revolutionize various healthcare roles, including patient navigators, dieticians, genetic counselors, enrollment specialists, and medication reminders. The deployment of the LLM into the healthcare system will be determined by healthcare professionals, emphasizing the startup’s commitment to partnership and industry collaboration.

Julie Yoo, General Partner at Andreessen Horowitz, acknowledged the potential of Hippocratic AI’s safety-first approach to maintain trust in the responsible deployment of generative AI solutions in healthcare. With their cross-disciplinary expertise and focus on empowering healthcare professionals and improving patient experiences, Hippocratic AI strives to reshape the future of healthcare.

Hippocratic AI, armed with significant funding, is pioneering the development of a specialized LLM for healthcare applications. Their innovative approach, focusing on patient safety, healthcare access, and improving outcomes, has the potential to transform the healthcare industry. Through collaboration with experts and extensive testing, Hippocratic AI aims to outperform existing language models while emphasizing the importance of empathy and compassion in healthcare interactions. The deployment of the LLM will be determined by healthcare professionals, ensuring its readiness and safety.

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