Health Tech Pharmacy,

Plenful Raises $17M to Help Curb Rising Levels of Pharmacy Burnout

Plenful has completed a $17 million Series A funding round, bringing its total fundraising amount to date to more than $25 million. The startup offers a software platform that automates the manual and administrative tasks that burden pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.

Just seven months after it emerged from stealth, San Francisco-based pharmacy automation startup Plenful completed a $17 million Series A funding round. The round, announced Thursday, brings the company’s total fundraising amount to date to more than $25 million.

Plenful’s technology is designed to automate the manual and administrative tasks that burden pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. This technology hit the market at an important time — pharmacy workers across the country are battling high levels of burnout, so much so that efforts are underway to establish the nation’s first-ever pharmacy union.

“Pharmacies are struggling due to increased patient demands, regulatory complexities, and significant staff shortages, causing drug store chains like CVS and Walgreens to shutter thousands of storefronts within the last two years,” said Plenful CEO Joy Liu. “These challenges are putting pharmacists under immense pressure, compromising patient care and the sustainability of the industry. It’s evident that substantial changes are necessary.”

By easing the administrative load, Plenful’s technology seeks to help pharmacy workers operate at their full capacity, deliver high quality care and sustain their profession, Liu explained.

Plenful’s software platform gathers data from various sources, such as faxes, PDFs and electronic health records. The platform uses this data to automate mundane administrative tasks — and it allows users to customize these tasks.

Some popular use cases among Plenful’s health system customers are referral management and 340B audits. As for pharmacy customers, some common use cases include referral orders, document data entry, revenue cycle management and 340B claims qualification.

Plenful sells its technology to health systems and pharmacy companies through annual contracts — and for some use cases, it charges a volume-based fee, Liu said. The startup has more than 25 customers, including Tampa General Hospital, Renown Health and Blue Cross Blue Shield.

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The healthcare automation software market is getting crowded with the likes of companies Innovaccer, Navina and SmarterDx, but Plenful differentiates itself by focusing only on pharmacy tasks, Liu noted. Her startup stands out further because it offers a whole platform rather than a point solution, she added.

“While there are one-off software solutions that automate single administrative tasks like those offered by Plenful, there is no purpose-built software for pharmacy operations that addresses the same holistic range of use cases as Plenful,” Liu declared.

Plenful’s Series A funding round was led by TQ Ventures. Other participants included Bessemer Venture Partners, Susa Ventures and Mitchell Rales, who is the co-founder and chairman of Danaher.

Photo: Ridofranz, Getty Images