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How Upstream Health is becoming one of the top health analytics companies in the U.S.

With the help of former Nike and Starbucks marketing executive Scott Bedbury, Montana startup Upstream Health Systems Inc., is rising within the ranks o...

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|Dec 7|magazine9 min read

With the help of former Nike and Starbucks marketing executive Scott Bedbury, Montana startup Upstream Health Systems Inc., is rising within the ranks of the healthcare sector.

An advanced tech company dedicated to improving lives by increasing health across communities, neighborhoods and populations, Upstream was created last spring and is now beginning to hire employees and raise capital.

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The company has branch offices in Bend, Ore., as well as Seattle, while the firm’s senior developer, economists, statisticians and mathematicians build and develop software in its Missoula, Montana office.

With the health analytics sector already a $350 billion industry and continuing to grow according to Upstream founder and chief science officer Alex Philp, it is becoming a bigger and bigger part of the $3 trillion healthcare field.

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“We are dedicated to this notion of upstream analytics — understanding the causes and conditions of diseases like coronary disease, diabetes and certain neurological diseases among others, and helping populations prevent diseases from occurring,” said Philp.

“We are focusing on innovative health care systems and private companies, trying to envision how to make entire regions healthier. We want to help people go from being patients to smart consumers, and we have a lot of tricks up our sleeve and major announcements when it comes to new projects and ideas.”

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Behind the company’s flagship software application called “Navigator” that it sells to health systems, insurance providers and pharmaceutical companies, Upstream is focused on environmental factors and built its software to allow clients to combine all of the factors in to one application.

“Where you live matters in terms of lifestyle behavior, exposure to carcinogens and in terms of accessibility to clean foods and water,” said Philp. “There are hundreds of variables that can be analyzed to see health trajectory.

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“Approximately 40-55 percent of risk is based on your lifestyle behaviors, and where you live is approximately 20-25 percent. We decided we could literally map all that so people could understand these diseases and these processes.”

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