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Osana Salud, which aims to transform healthcare infrastructure in Latin America, closed a $ 20 million Series A funding round led by General Catalyst.

The Argentina-based, but fully isolated, startup was founded in 2019 – just months before the pandemic. Since launching less than a year ago, Osana says it has contracts with health insurance companies and providers who collectively serve more than 6 million patients in the region. For example, it is work with Sanatorio Güemes and PAMI, which has a network of 5 million patients, among others.

Quiet Capital, Preface Ventures, FJ Labs, AforeVC and K50 Ventures also invested in the last round, bringing the total raised by Osana in her lifetime to $ 26.5 million. Lee Fixel’s Addition is also an investor.

CEO Andre Lawson told TechCrunch he was inspired to launch Osana Salud because around 50% of Latin America does not have access to quality health care. So he teamed up with COO Jorge Lopez to found the company to help change that. President Charu Sharma (the only US-based staff member) and CTO Hugo Martin joined at a later date.

“Our vision is to enable affordable and accessible health care for every person in Latin America by leveraging technology,” Lawson said.

Specifically, Osana Salud is building an API-connected infrastructure to help the region’s healthcare industry deliver a patient experience that delivers “more convenience, results and value,” Lawson told TechCrunch. Its original purpose is on build solutions for telehealth, pharmacy and diagnostics.

For example, he said, Osana wants to enable healthcare players to create “safe, secure and well-interacting” solutions with other healthcare systems faster and at less cost. With this in mind, the company brought in doctors and engineers to design this infrastructure.

“The goal is to enable the next generation of healthcare providers to create patient-centered solutions with the potential to positively impact healthcare experiences and outcomes for hundreds of millions of people. people, ”Lawson said.

In the past eight months, Osana has grown from four to around 50 people and plans to have more than 250 employees over the next year. Although not quite two years old, the startup believes it has already grown into Latin America’s largest telehealth company.

Sharma told TechCrunch that although she lives in Silicon Valley, she was drawn to the company’s mission and found the potential to “massively transform healthcare for an entire continent” appealing.

“In the US tech ecosystem, we focus a lot on first world issues, but an emerging market like LatAm has given me the opportunity to make a significant impact at a very basic human need level,” a- she declared. “As the saying goes, the talent is evenly distributed, but not the opportunities.”

In fact, proof that remote working will never be the same after COVID, neither Sharma nor Martin have met Lawson or Lopez in person.

The new capital will be used in part to accelerate the company’s product roadmap, Lawson said, and help it expand into Brazil and Mexico, where it has seen “strong inbound interest.” But above all, it will be used for hiring.

The timing of the creation of the company was good. The pandemic has shed light on the fractures of the healthcare system in Latin America, Lawson said. It also gave the industry the opportunity to demonstrate the benefits of a “virtual first” approach, he added. And once people tasted it, they wanted more.

As a result, Osana claims to have seen a sharp increase in both the number of customers and the use of its existing technology platform.

“Additionally, COVID-19 created an emergency for healthcare providers, resulting in very short sales cycles for us,” Lawson said.

Hemant Taneja of General Catalyst said the startup’s thesis aligns “perfectly” with its company’s healthcare thesis. Taneja himself is also the co-founder and executive chairman of Commure, a San Francisco-based startup that is also building software infrastructure aimed at transforming the healthcare space.

“The healthcare infrastructure landscape in Latin America is very fragmented,” he told TechCrunch. Most of the software vendors are small to medium-sized local vendors, who have not entered other parts of Latin America, Taneja said.

“Osana offers a variety of solutions for providers, payers and the pharmaceutical industry that are customizable and modular to create truly personalized experiences, regardless of the Latin American region,” he said. “They can be an important unifier in a truly fractured market.”

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