22d2a41With the 20th Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference fast approaching, Corporate Growth Capital Style has been featuring conversations with experts and panelists from the upcoming event. Our last post featured a conversation with Fred Singer, CEO of Echo360.
Today’s conversation is with Stephen Thau, Partner at Morrison & Foerster, and moderator of the “Healthcare Analytics and Big Data” panel. The Panel will feature Cormac Miller, EVP Corporate Strategy at the Advisory Board Company, Farzad Mostashari, Visiting Fellow at the Brookings Institution, and Ryan Schwarz, Managing Director at NaviMed Capital.

Here is what Mr. Thau had to say:

CGCS: What is Morrison & Foerster’s mission? What are your responsibilities with the company?

Mr. Thau:
Morrison & Foerster offers clients comprehensive, global legal services in business and litigation, with more than a thousand lawyers in 17 offices around the world. The firm is distinguished by its unsurpassed expertise in life sciences, technology, finance, legendary litigation skills, and an unrivaled reach across the Pacific Rim, particularly in Japan and China.  We have one compelling mission: to deliver success for our clients. Our lawyers are committed to achieving innovative and business-minded results for our clients, while preserving the differences that make us stronger.

My practice involves representing life sciences, medical device, and other technology companies in transactional matters, including mergers and acquisitions, licensing and collaborations, strategic alliances, public offerings and private equity and debt financings.

CGCS: What are some of the changes that are occurring in health care today? How is this creating opportunities for private companies?

Mr. Thau:
The healthcare system overall is facing pressure to reduce costs and improve outcomes, and these pressures are working their way through the entire system, from research and development through the delivery of care.  Companies are looking for more efficient ways to do what they’ve done before, or for new ways to accomplish the same results, and these provide opportunities for new companies to offer solutions.

We see this across all sectors of the industry, from outsourced research and development – where small, focused companies will license and carry forward research and development programs that had been the province of “big pharma” using funding from venture capital or other sources – to cloud-based IT solutions for clinical trial management, EHR systems for health care providers, and solutions for home-based and consumer-based health-care delivery.

CGCS: What are, in your opinion, some of the biggest challenges facing health care today, and how is technology helping to overcome them?

Mr. Thau:
Technology is playing a critical role in helping the healthcare system address the imperative to improve outcomes and reduce costs.  The use of electronic medical records, for example, is helping to coordinate care, and studies have shown a benefit to healthcare delivery.  Likewise, companies are turning to cloud-based software systems for clinical research, as well as for the managing and reporting clinical trial data.  Genomic analysis generates huge amounts of data, and technology solutions are being deployed to help physicians and researchers store, manage and analyze the data.

Technology also has an important role in healthcare delivery, from telemedicine to the proliferation of consumer devices that monitor health-related information.  With the increasing availability and use of health care data will come new challenges from the legal and regulatory perspectives about privacy, access and use.

CGCS: At the upcoming Strategic Growth Conference, you’ll be moderating a panel of experts discussing big data and analytics in health care technology. Why is this topic so essential today? And what can attendees expect to learn from this panel discussion?

Mr. Thau:
We are entering an era where physicians and other participants in the healthcare system, such as insurance companies, will have unprecedented amounts of information available to them about patients, drugs, health risks etc., and will also have access to unprecedented amounts of computing power to analyze that information.  One of the key challenges will be figuring out how to use this to improve outcomes or reduce costs.  All of this data will create opportunities for companies that are able to develop and implement smarter or better solutions.

We’ve put together a great panel of experts with different perspectives and experience in the field, and we’re looking for a lively discussion about what is currently happening and what is likely to happen in this rapidly evolving area.

For additional information about the Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference, and to register, click HERE.