Health care startup launched by Amazon, JP Morgan, Berkshire Hathaway disbands – Boston Business Journal

Written by Jessica Bartlett

Haven, the health care startup launched by Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. three years ago with much fanfare, announced on Monday that it would disband, leaving the three companies to solve the problems the company had been grappling with each on their own.

In a statement on the company’s website, Haven said it was disbanding the entity at the end of February.

“In the past three years, Haven explored a wide range of healthcare solutions, as well as piloted new ways to make primary care easier to access, insurance benefits simpler to understand and easier to use, and prescription drugs more affordable,” the company said in a statement on its website. “Moving forward, Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. will leverage these insights and continue to collaborate informally to design programs tailored to address the specific needs of their own employee populations.”

The three companies made headlines in January 2018 when they announced they would jointly form a health care startup aimed at improving employee satisfaction in health care and reducing health care costs for its combined 1.2 million employees. Details about the company were sparse, but the organization disclosed in June 2018 that it would be based out of Boston and led by Brigham and Women’s Hospital surgeon and New Yorker writer Gawande.

In March 2019, the company finally unveiled its name and its mission, saying Haven would pursue “common-sense fixes” to make primary care easier to access, simplifying insurance benefits, and making prescription drugs more affordable. As most observers expected, the company had planned to use data and technology in its efforts.

The company hired software engineers, data scientists and clinicians for both its Boston office and offices it had created in New York.

But within a year executives started departing from the organization. Haven’s chief operating officer also departed in 2019 after the executive said the commute from his home in Philadelphia to Boston was exhausting. In May 2020, CEO Atul Gawande said he would depart from the top spot to become chairman of the board and focus on the coronavirus pandemic, and in November was named to President-Elect Joseph Biden’s coronavirus task force. In August, Serkan Kutan, chief technology officer for Haven, departed to become chief technology officer of AmWell.

LinkedIn showed the executive changes occurred along with a number of departures from other previously announced employees.

Despite its undoing, the company said it had made progress exploring a range of solutions to the health care conundrum.

“The Haven team made good progress exploring a wide range of healthcare solutions, as well as piloting new ways to make primary care easier to access, insurance benefits simpler to understand and easier to use, and prescription drugs more affordable,” said Brooke Thurston, a spokeswoman for Haven, in a statement. “Moving forward, Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. will leverage these insights and continue to collaborate informally to design programs tailored to address the specific needs of our individual employee populations and locations.”

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