Startups

Pair Team CEO talks connecting nonprofits to healthcare services

The startup works with organizations including shelters and food pantries to help them provide healthcare services.
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Neil Batlivala

3 min read

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This edition of Making Rounds spotlights Neil Batlivala, co-founder and CEO of Pair Team, a startup that works to connect underserved communities to healthcare services. Batlivala talked with Healthcare Brew about how Pair Team partners with nonprofits, what healthcare services the team provides, and how the company’s business model works.

This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity.

What does Pair Team do?

We build telemedicine clinics on-site at nonprofits. We go to housing providers—like shelters or transitional or adult-living facilities—we go to food pantries; we go to sobering centers. And we help bring clinical capabilities to these more underserved communities to help connect them to high-quality care.

How we do that is a combination of upskilling and workforce development. We actually train the staff at our nonprofit partners to provide the services. This gives them a new revenue stream, so it can be very impactful from not just a mission perspective to provide more services to clients, but also to give them access to what we call an earned revenue model…and then we equip them with [things] like an iPad for telemedicine services, wireless blood pressure cuffs, glucometers, weighted scales.

We’re focused initially right now in California. We’re close to 140, 150 [employees]. A bulk of the workforce is the care team…community health workers, nurse practitioners, primary care providers, licensed clinical social workers, registered nurses.

What kind of healthcare services do you help nonprofits provide?

Full comprehensive primary care and preventative care services. We do clinical, behavioral, and we’ll also do social support coordination services. If we work with one of the clients at a housing provider, we can get people an annual wellness visit, help them get mental health check-ins with a behavioral health therapist. But then we’ll also be able to help them coordinate for rental assistance if they’re trying to graduate from the program…we view clinical, behavioral, and social care all together.

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Healthcare Brew covers pharmaceutical developments, health startups, the latest tech, and how it impacts hospitals and providers to keep administrators and providers informed.

[We work with] north of about 60 [nonprofits]…and more than 3,000 high-needs patients. So these are folks suffering from homelessness, severe mental illness, substance use, those recently transitioning from incarceration.

How does your business model work?

It turns out that there are a lot of individuals on Medicaid who don’t have the luxury of thinking about their health as much as they should be, just because there’s so much else going on. They’re a single mom who’s trying to think about, “Where am I going to sleep? How am I going to go pick up my kids?” Because of that, when health issues come up, they go to the emergency room in the hospital. They let issues build up, build up, build up, until they end up in hospital—which is very costly to the health plan. What the health plans do is they partner with us because we’re saying, “Hey, if we can get preventative care services to these individuals prior to that hospitalization, prior to that emergency department visit, prior to that urgent care visit, it’s actually more cost-effective.” It’s kind of a win-win. It’s more cost-effective for the individual to get that preventative care.

So your model is essentially saving money for health plans?

Exactly.

Navigate the healthcare industry

Healthcare Brew covers pharmaceutical developments, health startups, the latest tech, and how it impacts hospitals and providers to keep administrators and providers informed.