03/02/2017

Social prescription technology company Signum Health secures six figure investment

Signum Health, a digital referral platform for medical professionals, healthcare providers and the public, has secured a six-figure equity co-investment from Finance Wales and four angel investors.

As well as Finance Wales, the investment comes from William Record, commercial property investor and owner of Welsh ICE, investment specialist and CEO of Cognis Capital Welsh-born Myra Tabor, Iain Burnett, a former partner at BlueBay Asset Management, investor and board advisor, and an angel investor who wishes to remain anonymous.

Signum Health is the brainchild of primary care and public health manager Victoria Norman. Victoria has worked in the industry for 15 years and has first-hand experience of how a system like Signum Health can help patients while saving the NHS money.

Victoria explained: “Signum Health will enable patients, healthcare providers, pharmacies, GPs and other alternative health services to connect directly and share health information in a way that benefits everyone.

“Statistics show that GPs spend almost a fifth of their time on social issues which aren’t about the health of the patient. What we are aiming to do with Signum Health is to connect patients with local community providers who offer services they can access without having to take a GP appointment.

Victoria added: “Services ranging from counselling or reflexology, through to walking groups and debt advice, anyone will be able to find an alternative service closer to them to support them with their specific need. All of these are concerns that take up the time of a GP but can be provided by a digital referral service - and that is where Signum Health will step in.”

GP practices, pharmacies and any health care provider will be able to either buy a licence or subscription to Signum Health which they can then use to offer this service to their patients. Therefore, if the patient is working, but needs a referral to a physiotherapist or nutritionist, they won’t have to wait for a GP appointment, they can log on to Signum Health and arrange a relevant appointment. All of the information about the appointment subsequent treatment and outcomes will be recorded through Signum Health’s and so the patient’s medical records will be automatically updated.

Talking about the investment Victoria said: “Getting this investment is crucial in really taking Signum Health to the next level. Securing investment from such experienced Welsh entrepreneurs is amazing. Their experience, guidance and advice will really help to ensure that Signum Health succeeds and makes real changes to the way we deliver health services.”

During its start-up stage, Signum Health acquired a sophisticated online diagnostic tool which was developed at the University Hospital Wales Cardiff. It has already been used by medical practitioners around the UK to remotely diagnose a range of skin conditions and allergies. It can also diagnose 17 other conditions remotely and so has the potential to scale quickly.
 
Dr Marina Arulanandam, a GP at Llandaff surgery which has been using Signum Health’s diagnostic tool, said: “Our cluster of eight surgeries in Cardiff West is called the Well Being cluster and a system like this helps us do just that, manage the well-being of all of our patients efficiently while freeing the clinicians up for the more acute cases. Diagnostic systems like Signum Health’s give clinicians support much quicker than via the traditional referral system and also gives the patient the confidence that they are having an expert opinion.

“Many patients don’t need to see a GP, so a platform like Signum Health which could give patients the referral they want which will alleviate the stress and administrative burden on practices would be great. Signum Health is definitely the future of primary health services.”

Phillip Barnes of Finance Wales Investment Executive in the TVI team said: “We are delighted to have completed this seed investment into Signum Health Ltd. The company has a highly accomplished and passionate management team with a strong vision to improve frontline healthcare. Signum’s referral product is genuinely innovative and has the potential to make a real difference to GPs and patients. We are thrilled to support Signum in this exciting phase of its growth.”

Investor William Record explained that he met Victoria at Welsh ICE. William is a Director at Welsh ICE and Victoria attended the business innovation centre’s 5 to 9 club: “Victoria’s idea immediately struck a chord with me as my brother is a GP and I knew that there was a lot of room for innovation in this space. Her passion and drive for the product and the change it will bring really sold it to me and I can’t wait to see Signum Health grow and thrive.”

Signum Health is recruiting two full time and several part-time members of staff and is already in talks with many primary care providers and local health boards in Wales about introducing the social prescription and diagnostic platform.

Capital Law advised Finance Wales on this investment. It said: “Capital Law are delighted to have advised Finance Wales on its investment into Signum Health. The Technology Venture team at Finance Wales are extremely active in the healthcare diagnostic space and so Signum Health is a great fit with the Finance Wales TVI team, and an exciting venture.

“We look forward to seeing the growth and success of this business with the support of Finance Wales.”

Greenaway Scott advised Signum Health on the investment.

For more information, visit www.signum-health.com