What Prescription Does This Startup Have For Healthcare Real Estate?

Real Estate

In the medical real estate space, HealCo is a tech startup on a mission.

Launched in 2019, the company conducts a marketplace for medical and wellness office timesharing, management and compliance. HealCo brings together the spectrum of parties involved in the lease agreement process — from the healthcare provider to the medical office building owner and the hospital system operator — via the company’s technology platform.

With the healthcare consumer in mind, HealCo’s work is about connecting the provider with the right space for the right amount of time, and for fair market value. Their tech platform’s early-stage features simplify the search and the securing of space for healthcare practitioners, so that they can focus the vast majority of their time delivering high-quality, cost-effective outpatient care.

“Timeshares involve sharing a space with other providers to ensure optimal use,” said HealCo founder and CEO Kirat Kharode. “As a result, timeshares often lead to an ecosystem of complementary providers operating under one roof. It’s a medical office co-working system of sorts.”

Kharode spent almost two decades as a health system executive. He witnessed the thorny challenges, avoidable inefficiencies and opportunities to improve patients’ experiences. He knew the future of the healthcare real estate sector needed to stretch to accommodate the changes coming from the health and insurance industries.

Incorporated as an S-corp last January, and with seed funding secured, the Jersey City-based startup is growing its customer base. HealCo has more than 1,000 doctors and providers using its platform to find medical space to share. They’ve assisted property owners in timesharing over one million square feet across 42 of the continental 48 states.

HealCo’s mission is to facilitate the entrance of healthcare providers into real estate and communities where they are needed the most, especially as they are ramping up their practice, without binding them in long-term leases and brick-and-mortar investment decisions.

“A major learning from our proprietary data has been how closely our customer base of physicians reflects the same geographic areas as the highest Medicare Advantage concentrations across the country,” observed Kharode. “This patient population tends to be the greatest consumer of healthcare services in the United States. Decreasing their cost of care is extremely relevant to the country’s fiscal wellbeing.”

Right out of the gates, it has been an exhilarating year one. They’ve already rebranded from Healtor to HealCo, to better reflect their focus on the entire medical community. This month, they’ve relaunched their website to reflect the shift.

For capacity and trusted advice, HealCo has assembled an advisory board, with initial representation from the professions of commercial real estate, healthcare law and healthcare insurance, from the likes of CBRE, Hall Render, Marsh, Lincoln Harris CSG, LDM Commercial and Meridian.

Next year’s prognosis: more hustle. HealCo shows no sign of slowing down, and they’re getting experimental.

“In early 2020, we’re opening new HealCo-managed office spaces, beginning with two offices in New Jersey,” announced Kharode. “These sites allow us to get closer to understanding the needs of our customers.”

“These locations are different from conventional medical office timeshares, operated by hospitals for example, because we partner with the providers in helping them succeed by hosting community networking events for patients – focusing on social determinants of health – and networking events to meet other physicians in the area.”

Kharode and his team are limbering up to stretch themselves, too.

“We are planning to expand our enterprise offerings to health systems and large medical office building groups. We currently have started exploratory partnerships with four regional, multi-hospital systems in New Jersey, California, Florida and North Carolina.”

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