Mobile health app that uses incentives to improve pill taking raises $5.25M

Mango Health, a mobile health company that works with health plans and self-insured companies to help reinforce healthy behavior among members, has raised $5.25 million, according to a company statement. The mobile healthcare startup added venture investor Kleiner Perkins Caulfield and Byers, which led the Series A round. Among investors that participated in Mango Health’s […]

Mango Health, a mobile health company that works with health plans and self-insured companies to help reinforce healthy behavior among members, has raised $5.25 million, according to a company statement.

The mobile healthcare startup added venture investor Kleiner Perkins Caulfield and Byers, which led the Series A round. Among investors that participated in Mango Health’s seed round last year are Floodgate Fund, First Round Capital, Baseline Ventures, Bullpen Capital and angel investors.

Among the goals the fresh capital will help it to meet will be boosting account management to expand health industry partnerships. Cigna is one of the health plans that offers Mango Health. The app is also available in the iTunes app store.

Mango distributes alerts and reminders to users to take their medication. It also uses a point system in which users earn points for taking medication on time. Depending on how many points they earn, they can be entered into a drawing for gifts such as gift cards, charity donations and other items.

There’s some debate on whether gifts or incentives make a difference in changing behaviors.  Although it’s not a panacea, it has been shown to help different patient populations. But the gaming aspect of healthcare is an intriguing platform that has gotten the attention of pharmaceutical companies like Merck and Sanofi. They have collaborated with startups in this area, so it will be interesting to see if Mango Health turns some big pharma heads as well.

Mango has analyzed medication dosage patterns and shared some of the insights it has gathered on its blog. For example, Wednesday is the best day of the week for adherence and Saturday is the worst, not surprisingly. Among its users, breast cancer and birth control medication have the best adherence rates.