Supplier in the Spotlight: Ori.ai

| By James Gleason

Making sure that patients have access to healthcare is no easy task, but it's one that is becoming increasingly important in today's medical community. LGBTBE Ori.ai, founded by co-founders Seth Halpern and Brett Westphal, is using AI to modernize the process of finding patients and helping patients connect with the care they need.

Ori.ai in the Spotlight

  • Name of business: Ori.ai
  • Name of founders: Seth Halpern and Brett Westphal
  • Date founded:  June 2016
  • Date certified: August 2017
  • Location of business: Washington, DC, and Oakland, CA
  • Number of employees: 5

1. What is Ori.ai?

Ori is an AI-powered messaging platform that bridges gaps between patients and care teams. We help our members attract and nurture patient relationships by automating key steps in the patient journey. We’re headquartered in Washington, DC but serve providers, payors, and campus health centers coast to coast.

2. What is unique about your business?

Attracting patients and ensuring they get the right care with the right provider is an error-prone, laborious process in medicine. We use cutting-edge AI to deliver top-notch service at scale. What results is an always-on assistant that lives in patients’ pockets - and a solution that generates significant ROI to care teams in an era marked by increased competition, shrinking margins, and accelerating consolidation.

3. What were you doing before you founded your business?

Ori.ai was co-founded by Seth Halpern and Brett Westphal. Seth brings a decade of experience in healthcare product development and consulting. Brett is a full-stack software engineer with a focus on building high-performing tech at scale.

Seth graduated from Wesleyan and received his MBA from Georgetown. Before founding Ori, Seth spent most of his career in healthcare at The Advisory Board Company and Privia Health, serving dozens of health systems across the U.S.

Brett graduated from the University of Chicago. Before founding Ori, Brett joined VEVO and Nativo pre-launch as one of the first engineers and built both to scale to millions of requests.

4. What are your goals for your business?

Ori is a venture-backed startup with national growth ambitions. That said, we are a for-benefit company committed to improving access to care by modernizing practices wrestling with shrinking reimbursements and rising costs.

5. How has being a member of the LGBTQ community and an NGLCC certified LGBTBE impacted your business, if at all?

The LGBT community has been a major part of our success. Several of our early investors are members of the community that support LGBT entrepreneurs through a network called Gaingels. We were introduced to our largest customer by a fellow gay entrepreneur in DC. The LGBT community has been unbelievably supportive, which increases our ability to execute and the likelihood that we can succeed in a highly competitive space. Obtaining certification from the NGLCC as an LGBTBE has opened doors for us to engage the largest health insurance companies the US. I can’t speak highly enough about the value of the program.

6. What advice would you give to an LGBT person starting a business in your field?

Network, network, network. LGBT entrepreneurs are fortunate to be part of one of the most supportive and connected communities on Earth. Talk to anyone and everyone in our community as you seek to validate product-market fit or secure funding. Join the NGLCC and get certified earlier rather than later. I’m still hitting myself for waiting a year myself. Finally, be authentic, don’t be afraid to be vulnerable, believe in big things, and don’t shy away from opportunities to get out there.

This blog post is part of a series celebrating National STEM/STEAM Day (November 8, 2017) by spotlighting LGBTBEs in the STEM field. Interested in having your LGBTBE in the spotlight? Email [email protected].