Meet Jason: Particle Health’s New CEO

In this interview, Jason shares how Particle will disrupt the healthcare status quo, enabling providers to utilize their data so that the right patient is receiving the right care at the right time.

Jason is an engineer-turned-operator who was instrumental in building Komodo Health's data platform. He led the data platform’s expansion from beyond their core market of life sciences to also entail the rest of healthcare including payers and providers, creating a $50M revenue business in just a few years. Prior to Komodo Health Jason spent four years helping grow Palantir’s commercial analytics and data science capabilities. Jason holds a BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University.

Welcome Jason! We’re excited you’re here. What brought you to Particle Health?

Particle represents the next phase in my personal journey of using data and analytics to improve how our society engages with Healthcare.  It is still a very broken, inefficient system that needs better ways to use data to optimize so that the right patient is receiving the right care at the right time.  Prior to coming to Particle, I spent 7 years at Komodo Health building the Healthcare Map - the country’s most robust and complete repository of de-identified healthcare information - detailing the medical journeys of 300 Million patients in the United States.  And while there is a lot that can be done with de-identified data, there’s still a fundamental separation between the optimization that can be done at the de-identified level versus providing the information and context to a physician that has a sick patient sitting right in front of them.

And this is where Particle is primed to disrupt the status quo at a fundamental level, and why I am so excited to be here.  Particle’s APIs connect to the healthcare records of 300 Million identified patients in the United States.  This allows Particle to provide insights into the history and complications a patient might have, and provide those insights right to the provider treating that patient, in real-time.  Gone are the days of needing to wait weeks for medical records from a previous hospital to show up on some random CD, this is YOUR data as a patient and you should be in control of who receives it and why.

Not only is this a clear benefit to patients getting better care based on what disease/sickness they actually have, it’s also a great benefit for the health systems themselves.  Healthcare is slowly but surely moving towards a world where risk is being pushed down to the providers themselves in the form of value-based contracts.  Put simply, this means that if a provider can treat its patients correctly, ensuring that they are healthy and don’t need further treatment, they benefit from the financial upside of lower medical costs.  It’s critical to be able to access medical records quickly and efficiently to provide better care at lower costs.  As one simple example - if it’s difficult to pull the results of a lab test, it makes sense that a provider would just order another - identical - lab test rather than have to go through the hassle and more importantly delay in obtaining that information from another health system.  To put it bluntly - that’s crazy.

I believe that in 5 years we will be looking back at an example like that and be amazed at how long it took us to fix that, and I believe Particle will be a core part of that transformation.

What do you hope to accomplish at Particle?

My goals are to continue deepening the data foundation at Particle, with the goal of not only having secure access to every medical record but also being able to help providers contextualize and understand that data.  Using data effectively can be hard, and healthcare data in particular requires the combination of complex clinical understanding with intelligent AI and machine learning capabilities.  We strive to simplify all of this to succinctly present the right information in the right context to allow clinicians to make the right decisions for their patients.

Ultimately, my vision for success will be for every clinician in the country to have a complete, simple, context-specific understanding of the patients that they are treating, allowing them to make the right clinical decision to improve the outcomes of their patients and lower costs for the entire healthcare ecosystem.  

Tell us about your background– how did you end up in engineering? 

Growing up - I always enjoyed math and science, and asking questions about how the world worked.  I also enjoyed building things, so it was always a natural fit for me to end up in engineering.  I specifically really love Data Science as I find the translation of data as a representation of a situation or event into a model of that event a fascinating journey.  Once you have that model you can ask questions about what would have happened if different choices were made.  That process of testing and discovery is always enlightening for me.

What’s your favorite part about working in the health data space? 

Healthcare data is challenging - there are a lot of data silos and a plethora of formats of complicated information that require deep medical expertise to interpret.  And of course, there are very important privacy concerns that must be top of mind at every moment.  But these challenges are exactly what makes it fun and a worthwhile endeavor!  I enjoy having the opportunity to be a part of what I believe is a massive upcoming step change in the technological maturity of healthcare.

What else are you passionate about, outside of work? What is your proudest accomplishment? 

Family is very important to me.  I grew up spending my summers with my cousins and pretty much every weekend was some kind of family barbecue.  To that end, there’s no doubt that my proudest accomplishment was getting my wife Grace to agree to marry me!