Thursday, July 25 2024

    The Scope Forward Show

    By Praveen Suthrum

    No one in the medical field is free from the impact of COVID-19, including gastroenterologists. But the pandemic has only accelerated trends that started years ago. In this podcast, Praveen Suthrum interviews leaders in the gastroenterology space. Each episode will take you through different perspectives and help you ask the right questions. Praveen is the President of NextServices and author of Private Equity in Gastroenterology and Scope Forward (both Amazon #1 new releases).

    Episode# 59: Oshi Health: Hybrid GI care is here to stay

    Dive deep with Sam Holliday, CEO of Oshi Health, and Dr. Treta Purohit, Medical Director at Oshi Health, as they share groundbreaking insights into the virtual GI care model and its transformative impact on gastroenterology. This conversation is a goldmine for anyone passionate about the future of digital health and innovative patient care solutions.

    Episode# 58: Dr. Aja McCutchen: A new startup in women’s gut health

    Dive deep with Dr. Aja McCutchen, Co-Founder of OLVI Health, as she unveils her groundbreaking venture into women’s gut health. This conversation is essential for anyone interested in the nexus of gastroenterology, women’s health, and innovation.

    Episode# 57:  Andrea Cherubini: Launching AI apps on GI Genius

    Dive deep with Dr. Stephen Steinberg, as he shares his groundbreaking journey in revolutionizing Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS) technology. This episode is a treasure trove for anyone interested in the intersection of gastroenterology, medical technology, and innovation.

    Episode# 56: Dr. Steinberg: If you could put an ultrasound probe on a finger, why couldn’t you put it on a scope?

    Dive deep with Dr. Stephen Steinberg, as he shares his groundbreaking journey in revolutionizing Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS) technology. This episode is a treasure trove for anyone interested in the intersection of gastroenterology, medical technology, and innovation.

    Episode# 55: Dr. Chauhan: “Don’t forget that (an endoscopy) robot is part of the team”

    Dive deep with Dr. Sanket Chauhan, as he shares his insights on the integration of robotics in healthcare, particularly in gastroenterology (GI). This interview is a fascinating exploration for anyone interested in the intersection of robotics, AI, and healthcare.

    Episode# 54: Dr. Austin Chiang: We need more health professionals speaking on social media

    Dive deep with Dr. Austin Lee Chiang, as he shares his journey and insights on the intersection of healthcare, social media, and technology. This interview is a must-watch for anyone interested in the evolving landscape of gastroenterology, digital health, and the power of social media in medicine.

    Episode# 53: Dr. Erica Barnell: Non-invasive diagnostics will play an important role in preventing disease through early detection

    Dive deep with Dunston Almeida, Founder and CEO of triValence, as he explores the transformative power of data in gastroenterology (GI).

    Episode# 52: Dunston Almeida: The value of data in GI is huge

    Dive deep with Dunston Almeida, Founder and CEO of triValence, as he explores the transformative power of data in gastroenterology (GI).

    Episode# 51: Prof. Whitcomb: The old paradigm of germ theory doesn’t work. We need precision medicine.

    Dive deep with Prof. David C. Whitcomb, MD, PhD, Co-founder & Chief Scientific Officer at Ariel Precision Medicine, as he challenges the traditional germ theory and advocates for the adoption of precision medicine in healthcare. This insightful conversation is essential for anyone interested in the future of personalized healthcare and the role of genetics in medicine.

    Episode# 50:  Asaf Kraus: AI-based stool recognition aids Uber engineer support GI care delivery

    Dive deep with Asaf Kraus, Founder & CEO of Dieta Health, as he explores the innovative application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in gastroenterology, particularly in stool analysis. This conversation is a must-watch for those interested in the intersection of technology and healthcare, especially in digestive health.

    Episode# 49:  Dr. Michael Byrne: The elephant in the room for AI in GI – Reimbursements

    Dive deep with Dr. Michael Byrne, CEO & Founder of Satisfai Health, as he discusses the transformative potential of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Gastroenterology (GI). This conversation is a treasure trove for anyone keen on understanding the future of AI in medicine and its implications for the healthcare industry.

    Episode# 48:  Dr. Bara El Kurdi: What Young GIs Really Want

    Praveen Suthrum interviews Dr. Bara El Kurdi, Assistant Professor of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine | Host, GI Startup Podcast #thescopeforwardshow #gastroenterology #digitalhealth

    Episode# 47: Omer Dror, CEO of Lynx.MD: Data as a new ancillary

    In a world where lines between technology and healthcare blur more each day, I recently had the privilege of conversing with Omer Dror, CEO of Lynx.MD. Our dialogue ventured into the transformative realm of AI, the untapped potential of data, and the inevitable digital shift in gastroenterology. Self-driving cars once seemed a distant dream but today it’s more than a reality. Similarly, present advancements in AI and data analytics are reshaping healthcare in ways we’re only beginning to grasp.

    Episode# 46: Dr. Russ Arjal: “You’ve to break rules to do something that’s transformational”

    Dr. Russ Arjal, co-founder and chief medical officer of Telebelly Health, joins the Scope Forward show to discuss the future of gastroenterology and the role of technology in reshaping the field. With a focus on patient-centric care and the integration of AI, Dr. Arjal provides a comprehensive overview of the challenges and opportunities facing GI practitioners today.

    Episode# 45: Dr. Daniel Neumann: There are several risks in GI right now, we need to adapt to changes

    In this episode of the Scope Forward Show, Praveen Suthrum interviews Dr. Daniel Neumann President & CSO, Capital Digestive Care | CEO, Trillium Health.

    The Scope Forward Show podcast is onto Season 3. We recently hosted a powerhouse guest on The Scope Forward Show – Dr. Daniel Neumann, gastroenterologist and trailblazer in healthcare. As the President and Chief Strategy Officer for Capital Digestive Care and CEO of Trillium Health, Dr. Neumann is at the cutting edge of gastroenterology’s future. His insights provide a crucial roadmap for healthcare professionals in this rapidly evolving field. Dr. Neumann was also part of the GI Mastermind 2021 cohort.
    So what does the future of gastroenterology look like according to Dr. Neumann? The procedural orientation remains, but the spotlight shifts towards therapeutics over diagnostics. His emphasis on digital transformation, collaboration, and innovation form the triumvirate guiding the future of gastroenterology.

    Episode# 44: Sam Jactel, CEO of Ayble Health: “Being patient centered is different than being paitent driven”

    At the end of the interview, Sam Jactel, GI patient turned CEO talks about Thomas Nagel the philosopher. In a paper from 1974, Nagel famously asked us to contemplate “What is it like to be a bat?” He suggested that you may be able to study the behavior of a bat but you can never really know what it’s like to be one. Sam takes that analogy to his own GI condition. He was tired of looking for answers within the industry. He was tired of not being seen or heard. And he ended up figuring out a solution that worked for him. Then he thought why not help other patients like him. That prompted him to go from being the CEO of his own condition to becoming the founder and CEO of Ayble Health. This digital GI startup has raised $4.6 million from investors. Watch this incredible interview. It’s a sign of the times. Expect more patients to become digital healthcare providers because the industry isn’t stepping up enough.

    Episode# 43: AGA launches GI Opportunity Fund

    In this episode, Praveen Suthrum interviews Tom Serena (CEO, American Gastroenterological Association), Matt Schwartz (CEO & Co-founder, Virgo) and Andrea Vossler (Co-founder & Managing Director, Varia Ventures). * Scope Forward has always been about finding the way forward for gastroenterology. Naturally I was excited that a leading GI society such as the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) was scoping forward by launching a venture capital fund called the GI Opportunity Fund (in partnership with Varia Ventures).

    What was even more exciting is that AGA chose to invest in Virgo to launch the fund. I interviewed Virgo’s cofounder Matt Schwartz earlier this year – we talked about the value of data in GI.

    In this interview, you’ll learn from Tom Serena (CEO of AGA) on why (and
    how) AGA chose to go down the route of venture investing. How the market opportunity for GI is enormous. How to invest and participate in this fund? If you are an entrepreneur, how to land an investment.

    More importantly, you’ll understand the central premise of this interview. As Andrea Vossler, Cofounder and Managing Director of Varia Ventures said, physicians are the epicenter of medical care. You are the ones who are innovating. It’s time to step forward and make your ideas into a reality. If you listen closely, Matt has this one piece of advice for GI entrepreneurs.

    Episode# 42: Dr. Jonathan Ng (CEO of Iterative Health): Not using computer vision is a barrier to health equity

    I asked Jonathan Ng, founder and CEO of Iterative Health (formerly known as Iterative Scopes, an AI in GI startup) why investors recently gave them $150 million in funding. We didn’t exactly get to the answer but I can fathom a thesis.

    Iterative Health’s investors include the founders of Flatiron: Nat Turner and Zach Weinberg. A digital health company that advances cancer research. Pharma company Roche acquired Flatiron for $1.9 billion in 2018. Other investors of Iterative Health include Johnson & Johnson and Eli Lilly amongst others. Further key team members from Flatiron have been joining Iterative.

    My reading of the play here is straightforward. It’s possible that investors want to repeat their thesis of Flatiron for Iterative but in gastroenterology. Big Pharma is funding AI in healthcare to develop more targeted therapy for the drugs they develop. Therefore the central premise of Iterative’s offerings today seem to be on better recruitment for clinical trials. Physicians get an ancillary. Pharma automates patient recruitment.

    I came away super impressed with Jon’s unwavering vision for AI in GI: equitable healthcare. When I asked how Iterative is different from Medtronic or others who were also working AI in GI. He repeated his vision – he said the desire for equitable healthcare differentiated them.

    While on a medical mission in Cambodia, it occurred to him that not all doctors are made equal. And that means patients can’t get fair access to healthcare. Computer vision and AI could change that. He took action.

    Jon moved to MIT to study MBA and build on this idea. In a very short period, he developed the foundation for Iterative that went onto pave the way for AI in GI.

    Here’s Jon changing gastroenterology for good. It’s reasonable to say that the future of GI hinges on the execution of his vision.

    Episode# 41: Dr. Michael Owens: “What would I do with my time if I am not doing as many colonoscopies?”

    Gastroenterologist Dr. Michael Owens did a thought experiment during the pandemic period. He asked himself, what would I do with my time if I’m not doing as many colonoscopies?

    That question led him to leave his large GI group to start up a multi-specialty GI group that takes advantage of the trends shaping the future of GI. For example, trends such as value based care, the microbiome, AI, colonics, single-use devices, genomic tests, liquid biopsy and so on. As he implies, Mike literally implemented the central premise of the book Scope Forward to build future on his own terms. He stands as a great example for GI 2.0.

    We often limit our choices to what’s prevalent in the market. Join a hospital. Join PE. Merge with a large independent group. Kudos to Mike and his partners at Pearl Health Partners for having the courage to go against the grain and take a different, innovative approach.

    He says in the interview: if not now then when?

    Episode# 40: Dr. Kosinski: “GI is more vulnerable today than it was before” (SF interview)

    Dr. Larry Kosinski needs no introduction. As a leader, he’s known for innovating, for breaking away from the norm and be a guiding light for the industry.

    After a successful private practice career, he helped his group transition to a PE platform to work on SonarMD, a venture-funded company he founded. Now, he’s onto a surprising new startup, a stool-smelling e-nose called Voconomics (patent filed).

    In this freewheeling interview, we chat about everything that GI doctors must pay attention to. The risks of running non-diversified “colonoscopy factories” (as he calls them). The shift to digital that would catch most of the industry by surprise. How doctors can find the time from their busy lives to innovate by mastering the basics. And finally his take on private equity.

    This is such an important interview. It could quite easily alter the trajectory of many GI careers. It’s time to wake up to the vulnerability that private practice GI is in. Dr. Kosinski’s message is quite clear. Listen closely.

    Episode# 39: Erik Duhaime (CEO, Centaur Labs): Networks of people & computers will works together

    Data is indeed the new oil.

    Consider the strangeness of the scenario. GI doctors are supplying the fuel everyday that’s going to set the old norm on fire but don’t realize it. Because they are too busy generating the data!

    The wrong approach to this scenario is to fear this shift to digital and block it. You really can’t. It’s multiplying exponentially. The right approach is to figure out how to play the game or prepare for this changing scenario. Educate yourself on the future of GI and go there before the industry gets there.

    Erik’s company Centaur Labs helps AI medical companies cleanup and annotate the data that GI and other specialties generate. They do so by taking a crowdsourced approach. Thousands of medical students from around the world label polyps and other medical information via a gamified app. Centaur gives that labeled data back to Medical AI companies. Those companies in turn feed that data to the AI so that the AI learns the right approach to care.

    I kept asking, Erik how much time we have before AI becomes mainstream in GI. He initially said, we are early in the cycle. It’s still far out. I persisted. Finally, he said we are possibly 5 years away

    As Erik refers to a quote on AI, it’s not about the AI replacing doctors. But the future belongs to doctors who will understand the AI and replace those who don’t.

    Don’t miss this one. Your future self will thank you for it.

    Episode# 38: Greg O’Grady: As clinicians, some of our skills may become relatively obsolete

    As I write this note, I’m beginning to wonder what GI care means anymore. Just a few years ago, we were so sure of the role of the gastroenterologist in clinical care. Today, a flurry of digital innovations are urging the clinician to rethink her/his role. Surgeon and scientist and CEO of Alimetry, Professor Greg O’Grady reaffirmed how exponential technologies could make current clinical skills relatively obsolete.

    Gastric Alimetry is a FDA approved device (below) that non-invasively senses motility of the stomach. Sensors capture activity of the stomach, relay it to an app, advanced algorithms spot patterns and generate a report for the clinician. It’s fascinating technology that’s been in the works at the University of Auckland, New Zealand for a decade.

    Interestingly, in my book Scope Forward, I briefly talked about researchers working on a wearable device to track electrical activity of the digestive system and how algorithms would flag abnormalities (Page 51). Today it’s a commercial reality. The future is indeed coming at us faster than we think!

    Don’t miss this one.

    Episode# 37: Dr. Haytham Gareer: RNA stool test with 95% accuracy to increase colonoscopies

    In this episode of The Scope Forward Show, Praveen Suthrum interviews Dr. Haytham Gareer, Chief Medical Officer, Geneoscopy (RNA stool testing company).

    In November 2021, a month after Dr. Haytham Gareer joined Geneoscopy as CMO, the company raised $105 million in funding. The company is developing an RNA analysis platform to detect colorectal cancer (to be launched in 2023).

    A clinical study showed that when compared against the gold-standard colonoscopy, the platform demonstrated better sensitivity data in detecting advanced adenomas and colorectal cancer than other non-invasive tests.

    Dr. Gareer says Geneoscopy is going to increasing the number of colonoscopies being performed. However, it’s obvious to me that digital biology is disrupting not just GI but many other specialties that are diagnosing cancer.

    I couldn’t hold my curiosity and asked quite directly. Should gastroenterologists be worried about them? Should Cologuard be worried? Should Medtronic with its AI-based polyp detection system be worried? Because when there’s a test that’s going to detect adenomas with a fair degree of accuracy, why bother with diagnostic procedures? Dr. Gareer had a different and interesting view.

    As readers of Scope Forward, you already know my take. With more data, digital biology innovations such as RNA and DNA tests combined with machine learning would get extremely sophisticated. It’ll even be able to predict things that we just can’t with traditional approaches. Dr. Haytham completely agreed.

    Episode# 36: Sonia Grego: Oura ring for sleep. WHOOP for activity. Now, Coprata Smart Toilet for stool.

    In this episode of The Scope Forward Show, Praveen Suthrum interviews Sonia Grego (Duke Professor and Co-Founder at Coprata Inc). The Coprata toilet captures lots of data post flush, runs #AI algorithms on the data and provides the analysis to both patients and doctors.

    Watch this insightful interview to understand why smart toilets are essential for proactive (not reactive) GI care.

    Episode# 35: Demand is so high for GI psych – Dr. Riehi (Michigan Medicine) & Dr. Simons (Cleveland Clinic)

    While COVID was on and people sought help through meditation apps, the business world of behavioral health made a big announcement. Headspace (an app started by a former Buddhist monk) merged with to create Headspace Health in a $3 billion merger. You read that right.

    It’s only natural that behavioral health showed up in gastroenterology. Curious, I reached out to GI psychologists Dr. Megan Riehl from Michigan Medicine and Dr. Madison Simons from Cleveland Clinic. What were these large institutions up to in this space? Why were they hiring psychogastroenterologists? Was there patient demand for something like this? What role would cognitive behavior therapy play in digital health?

    This is an evolving space with high demand – especially for those GI conditions that don’t have straightforward solutions. Mental health and its role in the making and management of GI conditions is a space to watch.

    The brain-gut axis has a definite role to play in GI’s future. Watch this one.

    Episode# 34: Matt Schwartz: Huge opportunity to add a digital layer to GI and endoscopy

    In this episode of The Scope Forward Show, Praveen Suthrum interviews Matt Schwartz CEO & Co-founder of Virgo.

    Virgo has captured 400,000 endoscopy videos so far and that number is growing exponentially. Virgo has also partnered with pharmaceutical companies to recruit the right candidates for clinical trials which led to a fundraise of $8 million with FCA Venture Partners and a soon-to-be-announced strategic investor.

    Watch this insightful interview to understand why ‘data is the new oil’ and how Virgo will dramatically influence GI care in the coming years

    Episode# 33: Dr. Fehmida Chipty: From GI doc to COO of digital health startup

    In this episode of The Scope Forward Show, Praveen Suthrum interviews Fehmida Chipty, MD, COO of digital health startup Satya Health Sciences | NovoLiver.

    Watch Dr. Fehmida Chipty’s fascinating narration unfold fundamental issues of #gastroenterology. Why did she quit GI? What are the problems that we don’t talk about? Why don’t physicians ask for help? What her concerns are with our healthcare system? Is doing #colonoscopy after colonoscopy really helping solve for cancer?

    Your future self will want you to watch this one.

    Episode# 32: Abe M’Bodj: How will Private Equity Respond to Recession?

    In this episode of The Scope Forward Show, Praveen Suthrum interviews Abe M’Bodj, Vice President at Westcove Partners, a leading healthcare-focused investment bank. During an economic downturn, would PE investments increase or drop? About 10% of the entire gastroenterology industry is under some form of PE as of mid-2022. What effect would recession have on “second bites” (exits) of existing PE platforms? What impact would it have on valuations? What big announcements can we expect before the end of the year? Find out more in this exclusive interview.

    Episode# 31: Aonghus Shortt: “If you capture more data, you shoulod be able to do a better diagnosis.”

    We are back with the next season of The Scope Forward Show where you’ll get to meet innovators and leaders who are reimagining the healthcare system.

    The next phase of GI depends on innovators such as Aonghus and FoodMarble. Why? Because the industry is shifting from under our feet. Four trends are influencing GI: exponential technologies, consolidation, big brothers (such as hospitals, insurances) and changes in patient behavior.

    FoodMarble, a tiny device that analyzes digestive disorders such as IBS and SIBO, comes squarely in the middle of these trends. After selling 30,000 devices, what do they know about patients with IBS that a private practice does not? How can this be a new revenue-generating ancillary opportunity?

    The story of its growth is also interesting. An engineer gets an idea after seeing his girlfriend suffer. Ideates and develops the device in Ireland and China. Raises $6 million and sells globally – more than 2/3rd in the US. It’s indicative of how the next phase of innovation would happen.

    Aonghus says, with “more data”, you can come up with a “better diagnosis”. True. Welcome to the evolving world of data-driven GI.

    Episode# 30: Dr. Sravanthi Parasa: “When a phone can recognize my face, why can’t software recognize a polyp?”

    Every so often an interview reminds me yet again that the future is coming at us faster — much faster. I’m still wrapping my head around what gastroenterologist and AI researcher Dr. Sravanthi Parasa told me: there would be a “1,000 algorithms” in 3 years in GI.

    This is big implications for the business of gastroenterology. The AI will indeed operate and guide us like a self driving car. In such a world, how would your role evolve as the endoscopist? What would happen to all the PE valuations that are based on GI manual productivity? How would the workflow change when you combine liquid biopsy and AI? Would your practice prefer hiring an AI vs. an average endoscopist? What if the insurance mandates the use of AI?

    Welcome to GI 2.0.

    Episode# 29: Sam Holliday (CEO of Oshi Health): “My goal would be to cover all 50 states by the end of 2022.”

    Two weeks ago, Oshi Health raised $23 million from well-known investors. It reinforces the fact that the landscape of gastroenterology is shifting toward digitization.

    In this interview, Sam Holliday (CEO of Oshi Health) talks about their plans to scale across all 50 states by the end of 2022. They also plan to hire gastroenterologists and partner with GI practices. Learn about what’s attracting investor interest in digitization of gastroenterology.

    Episode# 28: Dr. Aja McCutchen: “How can we be so under-represented and expect to make a big change?”

    In a data driven world, it’ll become acutely obvious that our system is broken in terms of racial disparity. The drugs we have don’t work for all demographics. GI physician community is quite imbalanced in terms of race. Patients and future physicians will gravitate toward a more inclusive medical practice.

    It’s already apparent that social determinants of health (SDH) influence health outcomes. Whether we recognize it or not, diversity and inclusion affects all of gastroenterology. It’ll affect the future of GI. It’ll affect private practice GI — for sure.

    One of the most qualified people in our industry to understand this important topic is Dr. Aja McCutchen. She’s a Board Member of United Digestive and Chair of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Digestive Health Physicians Association (DHPA).

    In this interview, she shares her story – from the suburbs of Cleveland (“crazy Dave” drew her to medicine) to leading the field (GI has only 1% African American women). You’ll clearly understand the importance of paying attention to diversity and inclusion.

    Episode# 27: PE Platform US Digestive: “There’s Still Tremendous Green Space Within GI”

    US Digestive Health is one the eight private equity backed GI platforms in the country.

    In this open-ended conversation, Dr. Mehul Lalani (VP, US Digestive), Gabriel Luft (Principal, Amulet Capital Partners), and Jerry Tillinger (CEO, US Digestive Health) talk about how the platform has evolved.

    It was interesting to learn that from the PE platform’s  perspective there’s plenty of room to grow. We talked about whether PE in GI platforms would go public and how long they see the model to continue in  GI.

    We went back and forth on a few points – especially on whether the company expects disruption from digital health.

    Don’t miss this unique deep dive interview that brings together the GI physician, the CEO and the PE partner.

    Episode# 26: CEO of Bold Health: “We seek to cover all GI conditions you might want to see a doctor for”

    Elena Mustatea is the CEO and founder of Bold Health, a digital GI company that delivers digital therapeutics for the treatment of various GI conditions such as IBS. Their first app Zemedy is available in 190 countries. Now, they are hiring GIs and expanding in the US.

    In 2018, Forbes listed Elena in a 30 under 30 list.

    While private practice GIs are occupied with private equity, the world of digital health has been expanding. In Q1 2021, digital health attracted $9 billion in investments.

    In this first-of-its-kind interview, learn more about Bold Health and the world of digital therapeutics, CBT, integrative medicine and the advent of digital health in GI. Elena talks about their business and operational models. She delves into getting paid by insurances.

    Digital GI is a practical reality today. This train too is leaving the station.

    Episode# 25: How to start clinical research as an ancillary in gastroenterology

    Praveen Suthrum, President of NextServices interviews Dr. Narayanachar Murali (South Carolina), Dr. Don Lazas (ObjectiveGI, Tennessee) and Dr. Chris Fourment (CRSG and Precision Research, Texas). Learn how to start clinical research as an ancillary.

    In this interview, you’ll learn three different perspectives on clinical trials/research as an ancillary in a GI practice. We’ll explore the pros/cons, costs, risks, and operating models.

    Consider this interview as a primer on starting up with clinical trials/research. In the coming weeks, we’ll release more detailed interviews on the topic.

    Episode# 24: Dr. Scott Ketover: “The future of GI remains bright”

    Dr. Scott Ketover is the President and CEO of MNGI Digestive Health (previously Minnesota Gastroenterology). MNGI is one of the country’s largest independent GI practices.

    In a world of private equity, MNGI has firmly decided to stay independent. Dr. Ketover shares why they don’t need to and what their growth strategy is. Our conversation explores many topics. Especially insightful are his views on how GIs must build programs for the entire GI tract and not just focus on endoscopies. He reflects on what he took away about the future during the pandemic.

    Episode# 23: Author of VRx Dr. Brennan Spiegel: Virtual Reality in Gastroenterology

    Dr. Brennan Spiegel is the author of VRx: How Virtual Therapeutics Will Revolutionize Medicine. He’s the Director of Health Services Research, Cedars-Sinai Health System.

    This is a historic, one-of-a-kind interview. It lays out the digital future for GI from the lens of virtual reality (VR). Dr. Spiegel and his team have seen 3,000 patients via VR. The technology is no more new. FDA is approving solutions. Medicare is due to pay for VR. The challenge of private practice GI is to diversify from colonoscopy. Could VR be a new ancillary stream? Find out. Do not miss this one (35+ mins).

    Episode# 22: AGA talk: What must you know when considering PE (8 factors, 4 risks)

    Praveen Suthrum, President at NextServices recently presented at the AGA Virtual Town Hall (that was held in collaboration with the DHPA).

    This is what you’ll take away from this talk:
    1) State of PE in gastroenterology
    2) How exactly does PE operate and make money?
    3) The PPM debacle of the 1990s
    4) The four forces influencing GI consolidation
    5) 8 considerations and 4 risks
    6) How to stay relevant independent of your decision

    Episode# 21: Rock Rockett: “Yes, you can stay small and independent. But it’s a qualified yes.”

    Rock Rockett is the Founder and Principal of Rockett Healthcare Strategies. Rock has been in the GI space for almost two decades now. As a business person, he saw GI physicians evolve. In this interview, we explore the big question on many people’s minds: is it still possible to stay small and independent if you choose to?

    Read the entire transcript of the interview here –

    Episode# 20: Dr. Baig and Dr. Gialanella: “Shift will occur when there’s financial hardship. And it’ll occur pretty quickly as we see screening colonoscopy going down”

    New Jersey-based Allied Digestive Health recently became the 8th private equity platform in gastroenterology. In this interview, Dr. Robert Gialanella, CEO/President and Dr. Nadeem Baig, Vice President of Allied Digestive Health talk about their journey – from being competitors to partners to choosing private equity and more. Learn about how they consolidated without private equity first, building the largest GI group in New Jersey. They talk about the “generational divide” between the senior and junior partners and reflected on how they tackled this situation at Allied. They also shared their views on consolidations, disruptions, and EBITDA assumptions. Finally, they laid out four trends as gastroenterology moves to the future.

    Read the entire transcript here –

    Episode# 19: Gastrologix: “We create companies that physicians can have ownership in”

    What if you could own companies you spend money on? What if you could save money on routine purchases by getting bulk rates? With those ideas, Christopher Metz and Stephen Somers founded Gastrologix, a Group Purchasing Organization (GPO). Gastrologix is the first GI-specific GPO that works with independent gastroenterologists. Today, they count 75 GI practices in their growing network.

    Watch this interview to understand on-the-ground insights from a GI-specific GPO.

    Episode# 18: Interview with Dr. Bergein F. Overholt

    Dr. Bergein F. Overholt needs no introduction. He founded the Gastrointestinal Associates in Knoxville and led the group for four decades. He is also the past president of the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy and American Association of Ambulatory Surgery Centers.

    Dr. Overholt helped develop the flexible fibersigmoidoscope-colonscope, for which he earned many awards. In 1986, his efforts resulted in the establishment of the nation’s first GI single specialty Ambulatory Surgery Center. Dr. Overholt has also taught many of today’s GI practice leaders how to develop and manage their own GI-ASCs.

    In this one-of-a-kind interview, Dr. Overholt walks us through his four-decade-long journey, reflects on the new technologies, private equity, and shares his views on alignment among physicians. And finally, he shares timely and relevant advice for gastroenterologists.

    At a time when gastroenterology is at crossroads, Dr. Overholt says what needs to be said. Don’t miss the story of how the country’s first GI ASC started.

    Episode# 17: Interview with Giovanni Di Napoli, President, Medtronic GI

    Recently, Medtronic released a video showing how Pillcam (in partnership with Amazon) will enable home-based colonoscopy screening. Watch Giovanni Di Napoli, President of Medtronic GI sharing that vision.

    Naturally, I was curious to find out more and interviewed Giovanni few days ago. In this interview, he walks us through how Pillcam and GI Genius will evolve in the coming years. GI Genius is already approved in Europe and helps endoscopists use AI in detecting polyps. Further, he reflects on whether he sees Cologuard as competition or not and if insurances would mandate payment on adenoma detection rate (ADR).

    We also talked about how these developments will change the role of gastroenterologists. Do not miss this one (18+ mins) – get a glimpse into the near-future of GI.

    Episode# 16: Interview with Dr. Ellen Scherl

    Dr. Ellen Scherl is the Research Director and Founding Director of the Jill Roberts Center for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), Weill Cornell Medicine. Dr. Scherl has recently been honored with the Rosenthal Humanitarian Award from the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. Dr. Scherl is known nationally and internationally for her work in the field of IBD.

    Episode# 15: Interview with Dr. Michael Weinstein (Part 2)

    In the interview’s second part, Dr. Weinstein talks about how many aspects of the medical practice can be done remotely. He reflects on the future of GI post COVID, his experiences with the giants of gastroenterology (e.g. Dr. Gene Overholt, the father of endoscopy) and what must fellows in GI must focus on. More importantly, he deeply contemplates on social disparity in gastroenterology.

    Episode# 14: Interview with Dr. Michael Weinstein (Part 1)

    Praveen Suthrum, President, NextServices interviews Dr. Michael Weinstein, President & CEO of Capital Digestive Care and Past President, DHPA. Dr. Weinstein is also a member of the governing board at the AGA Institute.

    Dr. Weinstein’s interview is loaded with so many insights that we will be releasing it in two parts. Each part deserves to be watched in full.

    In this video, you’ll learn how Capital Digestive Care grew to be 60+ providers is a story that’s relevant to many groups looking to consolidate regionally. In 2018, they went on a strategy planning retreat to decide what they’d like to be in 2030. That led to the partnership with Physicians Endoscopy.

    Dr. Weinstein outlines the benefits of their MSO to private GI practices and how it differs from private equity.

    Episode# 13: Interview with GB Pratt, CEO of ModifyHealth

    George “G.B.” Pratt is the Founder and CEO of ModifyHealth. The company recently raised $2 million in Series A funding – right in the middle of the pandemic. As a “food as medicine” company, ModifyHealth provides fresh, Low-FODMAP and Gluten-free meals to patients suffering from GI conditions. GI practices partner with the company to benefit from a dietary ancillary. In this interview, you’ll learn more about ModifyHealth’s business model. A big question GB reflects on is whether ModifyHealth goes against the grain of today’s healthcare model.

    Episode# 12: Interview with Dr. Partha Nandi (Pinnacle GI)

    On November 30th, 2020, Troy Gastroenterology (Michigan) announced its partnership with H.I.G. Growth Partners to launch the seventh private equity platform in GI: Pinnacle GI Partners.

    Dr. Partha Nandi is the President, Practice CEO and Executive Chair of the Board of the new platform. In this insightful interview, he shares why it’s still an early inning for private equity in gastroenterology, how they chose their PE partner and discusses challenges with EBITDA expectations. Listen to this exclusive deep dive into GI’s latest PE platform.

    Episode# 11: Interview with Dr. John Allen

    John Allen, M.D is the Chief Clinical Officer of the University of Michigan Medical Group and is also on the board of Allina Health. In 2019, AGA presented its highest honor, the Julius Friedenwald Medal for his contributions to gastroenterology. Previously, he was the chief of Digestive Diseases at Yale and helped build Minnesota Gastroenterology (now MNGI), one of the largest GI practices in the country.

    This interview is so insightful that it’ll help you make several business and personal decisions for the long haul. Here’s specifically what you’ll take away:
    1) What does it take lead calmly and steadily through a crisis? Especially a large health system
    2) Planning for another pandemic (or another wave) should it occur
    3) Fundamental shifts in GI and US healthcare economics that we are not yet recognizing
    4) Weighing pros and cons of private equity
    5) Future of gastroenterology – technology, consolidation, ethics and morals

    Episode# 10: Interview with Dr. Prashant Krishnan

    Dr. Prashant Krishnan is the Chief Medical Officer of Gastro Care Partners/Peak Gastroenterology Associates. In December 2019, Peak Gastroenterology partnered with Varsity Healthcare Partners to launch the sixth PE platform in GI. In this insightful interview, Dr. Krishnan reveals a core strategy (called YOU) that led to their explosive growth from 4 to 43 providers. That growth opened doors to private equity.

    Episode# 9: Interview with Dr. Lawrence Kosinski

    Dr. Lawrence Kosinski is the Founder and Chief Medical Officer at SonarMD. In this exclusive interview, Dr. Kosinski said what needs to be said. It’s an urgent wake-up call to the GI industry. The topics we cover range from starting up a GI-tech venture to private equity, valuation concerns and what in the end has value in life.

    Episode# 8: Interview with Dr. Joe Rubinsztain

    Joe Rubinsztain, M.D is the CEO and Co-Founder at ChronWell. The company provides technology-enabled solutions such as Chronic Care Management (CCM) and Remote Physiologic Monitoring (RPM). Previously, he was the President at gMed, which was acquired by Modernizing Medicine in 2015.

    In this future-oriented interview, Dr. Rubinsztain walks us through how ChronWell works and their progress during COVID-19. He provides interesting insights into how technology will play a bigger but quieter role in the future.

    Episode# 7: Interview with Scott Fraser

    Scott Fraser is the Senior Healthcare Advisor, Private Equity at H.I.G Capital and Founder & Managing Director at Fraser Healthcare, a consulting practice focused on growth strategies for healthcare companies and private equity firms. He’s worked in the gastroenterology space for 25 years with companies like Given Imaging, EndoChoice and Boston Scientific. More recently, he was President of Practice Management for Physicians Endoscopy.

    In this podcast, Scott delves into new ancillaries you could start right now. He talks about making a practice attractive for investment. And he reflects on the future of GI when present market forces accelerate.

    Episode# 6: Interview with Dr. Latha Alaparthi

    Praveen Suthrum, President of NextServices interviews Dr. Latha Alaparthi, PACT Gastroenterology Center and Vice President of DHPA.

    In this interview, learn how a multispecialty GI group made a decision to ally with a regional hospital. Understand what steps PACT GCC took to navigate COVID-19 and what they are doing now to continue endoscopies safely. More importantly, Dr. Alaparthi reflected on how there could be more women in leadership positions in gastroenterology. And how physicians must take care of themselves first.

    Episode# 5: Interview with Dr. Ashish Atreja

    Praveen Suthrum, President, NextServices spoke to Dr. Ashish Atreja, the Chief Innovation Officer at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. He’s a well-known keynote speaker in the field of digital medicine. Also, a board member of Rx.Health that released the Virtual Care Hub (with AGA) this week.

    He called this a “watershed moment” for gastroenterology. This interview has so many insights that it deserves to be watched in full and a few times.

    Please Like, Share and Follow our podcast to never miss out on such insightful interviews.

    Episode# 4: Interview with Dr. Michael Dragutsky

    Learn how Gastro One in Memphis, Tenn. partnered with Webster Equity Partners to create One GI, the latest PE platform in gastroenterology.

    Praveen Suthrum, President of NextServices, spoke to Dr. Michael Dragutsky, Chairman of One GI, the latest private equity platform to take shape in gastroenterology. Memphis, Tenn. based Gastro One partnered with Webster Equity Partners to announce One GI earlier this week.

    It’s possibly the ONLY medical practice deal to conclude during this crisis.

    Episode# 3: Interview with Dr. Chris Fourment

    Praveen Suthrum, President of NextServices and Author of Scope Forward interviews Dr. Chris Fourment, President/CEO of Clinical Research Strategy Group/Precision Research.

    In this interview, you’ll learn why Dr. Fourment chose to focus on clinical research as a career path. Dr. Fourment also walks us through the various aspects involved in clinical research and how CRSG and Precision Research are helping GI physicians build a sustainable ancillary for their practice. He also reflects on the role of the future of clinical research in a digital world. Watch this insightful interview in full to learn what it takes to create a clinical trials ancillary in gastroenterology.

    Episode# 2: Interview with Dr. Michael Byrne

    Praveen Suthrum, President, NextServices interviews Dr. Michael Byrne, CEO & Founder of Satisfai Health, Founder of ai4gi. Learn about the progress of artificial intelligence in gastroenterology.

    From this video you will understand where exactly AI is in gastroenterology. What must private practice gastroenterologists do now? What does the world of GI look like post-COVID? Stay on top of GI trends by watching this thought provoking interview in full.

    Episode# 1: Interview with Dr. James Leavitt

    Praveen Suthrum, President, NextServices interviews Dr. James Leavitt, President and Chief Clinical Officer, Gastro Health. Topics include changes at Gastro Health, telemedicine, private equity, future of gastroenterology, how do you make healthcare better, valuations of GI practices during COVID-19.

    Private equity in gastroenterology began with Audax investing in Gastro Health back in 2016. Over the last few years, Gastro Health expanded to 250 providers and to other states like Alabama and Washington. This interview is insightful at so many levels. Watch it in full. Also, if you’ve always viewed private equity uni-dimensionally (that it’s all about the money), definitely watch the last segment. Dr. Leavitt talks about how passionate we all are about making healthcare better.

    When you book a consult below, we’ll send a free tool to help you identify what level of performance your practice is at. From a Level 1 to 5 (low to high). During the call, we’ll identify what a possible growth strategy looks like.