Mohm is providing access to physician moderated children’s health communities
Mohm Health is an online community to support new parents in making the right decisions for their children’s health. The platform provides users with access to a community of other parents and pediatricians who curate healthcare content and provide guidance for their child.
Katie Carlon and Ashley Ryu met on their first day at Columbia Business School when they were assigned to the same case team and, from there, a shared passion for healthcare innovation blossomed. Their chance pairing could not have been more serendipitous. Katie is a former Deloitte healthcare consultant turned registered nurse. Previously she practiced at the University Pennsylvania Health System and is currently working in critical care at Mount Sinai in her spare time. Ashley has a background in healthcare equity research at RBC and corporate development at Komodo Health.
From the onset, the team was determined to use their extensive backgrounds to develop an innovative solution to complex healthcare challenges. While in school, they entered a pitch competition, which led the pair to create what eventually became Mohm, although it looked very different at the time. The initial idea was a digital solution focused on cutting ER costs by helping patients with chronic conditions understand when to seek hospital-level care. After conducting more customer research they shifted their focus to pediatrics. They realized that even though parents care about good hospital care for their children, they really wanted guidance and support in preventive pediatric care. This became the thesis for Mohm and since then they were accepted into the first cohort of the Primary NYC Founders Fellowship. They are now looking forward to starting Forum Ventures’ pre-seed accelerator program this month and launching their first pilot pods.
When you have a fever and a cough, one of the first things you do is Google your symptoms and then read about your possible illnesses. A bout of panic ensues as you are overwhelmed by the amount of information and misinformation that exists about your symptoms. Now imagine this is your newborn child. That panic is drastically amplified. Should I call my pediatrician? What if my pediatrician is not available? Should I go to the emergency room or schedule an appointment for tomorrow?
There is no single place to consume reliable and accurate information on how to respond in this situation. Furthermore, online health groups are not moderated and only 26% of people are happy with online communities. Lack of curation is overwhelming for parents, who have trouble sorting through the noise on Facebook, WebMd, and Healthychildren.org. Inaction or the wrong action as a result of misinformation can mean drastic consequences for a child’s health. There is a need for a platform that is interactive and medically accurate.
Parents complete a detailed survey of their demographic information, work status, parenting styles, and information about their children. The platform then places parents into peer groups of 8–10 based on survey results and then holds bi-weekly children’s health discussions with the peer groups. The discussions follow a 12 week curriculum that includes pediatrician led education and open Q&A sessions moderated by the pediatrician.
If you have questions or concerns about the COVID vaccine being approved for younger kids, you can ask that and the pediatrician will address it live.
In addition to the scheduled sessions, pediatricians moderate parent chats and can advise on health concerns offline. For example, a parent can post a question about what they should do if their child has a fever and another parent can post an inaccurate article about how the COVID vaccine causes heart problems in young children. The pediatrician can advise the parent on a proper fever response and can post an accurate scientific study about the safety and efficacy of the COVID vaccine for young children.
How Mohm Improves Preventative Care
In a medical context there are objective truths which lead to the correct preventative healthcare measures. Through encouraging productive discussion and the reduction of misinformation, Mohm believes that community is a piece of preventative care.
Mohm is more than a social network–Mohm is a tool for supporting your child’s healthcare in between clinical visits. This prevents patients from slipping through the cracks and can even prevent dangerous ICU visits due to inaccurate information and delayed or foregone treatment.
Product Growth and Next Steps
Mohm is currently taking a direct-to-consumer approach to show proof of concept. The company currently has 20 pediatricians and medical professionals on their waitlist. The team has also secured Dr. Rebekah Diamond, a pediatric specialist and assistant professor of medicine at Columbia, to lead their first two pods in February.
In the long term, the team believes the real need for Mohm exists amongst middle and lower income families with limited access to care. To expand access, the team is exploring B2B channels such as Medicaid, partnering with providers, and partnering with employers.
If you are interested in learning more about Mohm or being part of the pilot, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are interested in signing up for Mohm’s waitlist, sign up here.