RegisterPatient.com secures $4.1M in funding


FILE PHOTO - David Williams, a registered nurse, is founder of RegisterPatient.com, an online system that aims to simplify and replace the process of filling out forms at doctors’ offices Monday, August 23, 2010.

Doug Finger/Staff photographer
Published: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 at 9:43 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 at 9:43 a.m.

Gainesville-based RegisterPatient.com has secured $4.1 million in funding from two venture capital firms as it prepares to expand its line of software in the growing field of electronic medical records.

The company also announced late Monday the hiring of Jana Skewes as president and CEO.

Skewes has 26 years of experience in health care, mostly recently as CEO of Shared Health, a Tennessee company that provides web-based patient information software for medical providers.

Founder David Williams will remain with RegisterPatient to help its growth efforts.

The funding was led by Harbert Venture Partners III along with the Florida Opportunity Fund.

Harbert Venture Partners is a branch of Harbert Management Corporation of Birmingham, Ala., and has has an office in the University of Florida's Innovation Hub.

The Florida Opportunity Fund is funded by the state and the federal State Small Business Credit Initiative. The fund is sponsored by Enterprise Florida and managed by Florida First Partners.

RegisterPatient has seven employees, plus five contract computer programmers, with plans to add 32 employees over the next 18 to 24 months, including sales, marketing, support and programmer positions.

The company has received a $320,000 grant from FloridaWorks funded by the U.S. Department of Labor to reimburse a portion new employees' salaries while they are in training.

The Alachua County Commission also approved a tax refund for RegisterPatient Tuesday through the Qualified Target Industry program by a 3-2 vote. The QTI is worth up to $256,000, or $8,000 per job created, with the county and city of Gainesville picking up 10 percent each and the state paying 80 percent. The refund still needs approval from the Gainesville City Commission at its Oct. 18 meeting.

James Davis, director of sales and marketing, said the QTI would help keep the company in Gainesville. He said Nashville, Atlanta and Birmingham, Ala., cities with health-information technology hubs, are trying to lure them away.

Williams, a registered nurse for 22 years, started the company in 2006 when he saw the frustration of patients in filling out forms prior to appointments.

Drawing on his own knowledge of computer programming, he started developing the company's online tools for patients and medical practices to share records and communicate online, working with local doctors' offices and other businesses to test and develop the software.

He found a programmer in the Ukraine online to help with development. Andy Selutin has since relocated with his family to Gainesville as chief technology officer.

Richard Allen of Synogen Development Group helped the company put together a business plan and a team of investors who provided $250,000 in seed capital in 2009. RegisterPatient launched its retail version for doctors' offices in 2010.

Davis said the company changed focus after attending several trade shows in 2010 where they got more interest from patient record companies than from doctors. He said they also compiled a laundry list of features the companies said were missing from other electronic medical records. They went about designing features that can be sold individually to large health systems or other third-party medical record vendors to integrate into their own software. The investors provided another $500,000.

Davis said the work gave RegisterPatient a head start in developing features in advance of new federal requirements for medical providers to convert to electronic medical records by 2015. He said their partners will soon be rolling out the features to thousands of users.

In the meantime, Davis said three to six new medical practices a day and 500 to 700 patients a month are signing up for the retail version.

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