REDWOOD CITY — Wider Circle, a tech-enabled community health organization working with health plans and providers to connect neighbors for better health, t has closed a $38 million Series B funding round led by AmeriHealth Caritas, a national leader in Medicaid managed care.
The AmeriHealth Caritas investment was made through the company’s new wholly owned subsidiary, Social Determinants of Life, Inc. Blue Venture Fund, Chicago Ventures and other previous investors also participated in the round, which Wider Circle will use to build out its national infrastructure, team and technology to support its expansion plans.
“Wider Circle was founded with the mission to build and cultivate trusted peer-to-peer relationships, engaging Medicaid and Medicare beneficiaries at a local level to drive health literacy and adherence and improve access to social determinants of health resources to address challenges ranging from food insecurity to social isolation,” said Moshe Pinto, CEO, Wider Circle. “With the closing of this Series B funding round, we are even better positioned to address health equity and SDoH needs at scale as we connect neighbors for better health.”
“We are very excited to partner with Wider Circle. Our two companies know the power and impact that social networks can have not only on health, but to elevate life outcomes and create mobility out of poverty. AmeriHealth Caritas was an early pioneer in addressing the health outcomes of people who are challenged by poverty and disability. Today we know the future must focus on moving from wellness to resilience, and that neighborhood-level social support is a key foundation,” said Paul A. Tufano, Chairman and CEO of AmeriHealth Caritas. “By building strong social networks and focusing on the underlying root causes of poverty, we can help to ensure that the American Dream is in reach for all.”
In 2015, Wider Circle set out to find a better way to help Americans thrive at any age. Through rigorous analysis and testing, their team learned that the most effective approach to enabling better health and independence is to integrate support and services at the community level, making it easier for neighbors to take the best care of each other. Today, Wider Circle offers its innovative programs to more than 320 communities nationwide.
Central to Wider Circle’s DNA is its evidence-based, data-driven approach to identifying and grouping like-minded health plan members at the hyper-local level, and then empowering those neighbors to support one another through tailored in-person and virtual programming. Wider Circle programs have helped Medicare and Medicaid plan members improve preventative care utilization and vaccine adoption rates while reducing hospital days. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the organization has played a critical role in supporting vulnerable populations facing isolation – delivering more than 180,000 meals to those in need and driving comprehensive social support services.
“Empowering peer-to-peer social support networks can overcome systemic economic and health inequities,” said Darin Buxbaum, president and chief operating officer of Wider Circle. “With the support of AmeriHealth Caritas’s new Social Determinants of Life, Inc., Blue Venture Fund and others Wider Circle is well positioned to extend our proven hyper-local engagement model to improve health outcomes in communities nationwide.”
Only between 10% and 20% of a person’s health is reportedly tied to factors like clinical care. The other 80 to 90% can be broadly attributed to social determinants of health (SDoH) which affect a wide range of health and quality-of-life outcomes.