Clinical Generative AI Startup Ambience Healthcare Raises $70M
Generative AI startup for medical professionals Ambience Healthcare has raised $70 million in a Series B funding round co-led by Kleiner Perkins and the OpenAI Startup Fund, with participation from existing investors Andreessen Horowitz and Optum Ventures. Ambience is a rising star in the burgeoning field of generative AI tools for physicians, with a large language model-fueled assistant to transcribe and summarize conversations, track clinical documentation through electronic health record (EHR) platforms, and even make personalized educational material for patients and their families.
Ambience Generative AI
Ambience Healthcare has created a suite of products under its name to handle tasks for doctors and other medical professionals. AutoScribe handles the transcription organization of patient interactions, doctor notes, and other data, while AutoCDI analyzes the patient’s files to make sure all of the paperwork around their treatment is in order and transparent. That helps the AutoRefer tool produce referral letters upon the primary doctor’s request for specialists and consultation. The information also serves as the basis for the AutoAVS tool, which employs the trained LLM to compose handouts for patients and their caregivers and families outlining the latest health updates and relevant context for the patient. The AI can also translate the handouts into many other languages to meet the needs of the patient,
Ambience claims its AI tools reduce clinician documentation time by an average of 78%. The startup now counts major healthcare systems like UCSF, Memorial Hermann, and John Muir Health as clients. The startup points to tying together real-time documentation and coding to improve revenue and increase efficiency overall. Though Ambience doesn’t explicitly point to an LLM behind its technology, the OpenAI contribution makes it at least likely that the platform relies on a fine-tuned version of GPT-4 or GPT-4 Turbo.
“Healthcare is one of AI’s most promising opportunities to create an outsized positive impact on the world,” OpenAI COO and OpenAI Startup Fund manager Brad Lightcap explained. “Ambience Healthcare has built an incredible team to focus on providing a complete ecosystem of products that seamlessly fit into the workflow of practitioners, pushing both AI and medicine forward.”
Generating Healthy Interest
The generative AI boom of the last year or so has only accelerated the adoption of conversational AI by healthcare providers. New and upgraded products have poured into the market, along with plenty of investment checks for startups pursuing similar goals to Ambience, albeit not usually so large. For instance, Layer Health raised $4 million in November to help healthcare providers gather insights from scattered written medical records, while Abridge raised $30 million to boost its work aiding doctors, and clinical generative AI startup Nabla raised $24 million just last month.
International giants like Amazon Web Services (AWS) are keen to make their own clinical assistants, while Google released the MedLM LLM for a similar purpose based on its Gemini family of models. The Mayo Clinic has already been incorporating Google’s earlier Med-PaLM 2 LLM into its research hospital. There’s also Oracle’s generative AI-powered voice assistant for healthcare providers to automate administrative tasks and carry out voice commands. Perhaps most notable with regards to Ambeince is Microsoft subsidiary Nuance, who imported OpenAI’s GPT-4 LLM into the Dragon Ambient Intelligence platform medical professionals used to transcribe patient interactions last March.