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Scouting Report-Canvas Medical: An AI Powered EMR for Physicians Moving to Value

Event: Canvas Medical, a San Francisco-based AI-powered electronic medical records startup, recently raised $17M in Series A funding. The round was co-led by Inspired Capital and IA Ventures with additional participation from existing investor Upfront Ventures. The company plans to use the funds to build new partnerships with insurers, to grow its business among virtual first clinics and, to meet regulatory goals to allow it to receive federal incentive payments.

Description: Canvas is an EMR startup targeting small to mid-size PCPs ranging from sole practitioners to practices with up to 50 clinicians. According to the company, they offer a fully integrated platform that can run all of the administrative tasks of physician practices as well as reduce the amount of time doctors spend entering patient data, diagnoses, and tests into EMRs. For example, according to the San Francisco Business Journal, Canvas has eliminated the need for doctors to click through multiple menus when entering data. Instead, Canvas’ machine learning and statistical modeling software organizes and classifies the information in real-time so that all clinicians need to do is type the information onto a blank page. This allows clinicians to focus on the work of caring for patients and less on entering data into an EMR which has shown to be a major drain on physician productivity and contributor to physician burnout (please see “U.S. Clinicians Spend 50% More Time in EHR than those in other Countries” in the 12/22/20 edition of the HSB blog, link here). According to Canvas Medical CEO Andrew Hines, their product can make doctors 30% more productive in the first month of use and help reduce the amount of time spent on charting by 1-2 hours per day (clinicians typically spend 2 hours in the EMR for each hour of direct patient-facing time according to a study in the Annals of Internal Medicine, ). In addition to time and cost savings, the Canvas Medical EMR is designed to better align practices with value-based care models, where payments are tied to outcomes instead of volume. This allows practices to better track and attribute outcomes to the measurements required by insurers under these contracts.

Implication: While the move over the last several years to greater use of EMRs had helped providers and payers collect and generally exchange larger volumes of data, it has come at the cost of a dramatic increase in demands on clinicians. As noted, the average physician now spends over two hours in an EMR for each hour of patient care and an additional 1-2 hours of so-called “pajama time” entering records after hours to catch up on record keeping. Solutions like Canvas Medical’s can not only help reduce stress on overworked physicians but also improve coding and the quality of patient care. In addition, given their solution was designed and built to capture and supply both providers and payers with the data needed to measure and attribute care under value-based models, they will facilitate the movement of more physicians to risk-sharing models. Moreover, by eliminating the need for physicians to click through multiple screens to find the appropriate field to input data, less data is likely to end up in unstructured free text fields reducing

miscategorization or missing data which should improve the data integrity and data completeness of clinical files.


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