Sunday 25 February 2018

Remote cancer screening firm raising €2m for global expansion

Chief executive officer of Let's Get Checked Peter Foley. Photo: Gerry Mooney
Chief executive officer of Let's Get Checked Peter Foley. Photo: Gerry Mooney
Sarah McCabe

Sarah McCabe

Dublin home-health screening firm Let's Get Checked is seeking to raise another €2m just months after completing a €350,000 seed fundraising round, after unexpected growth at home and overseas.

"We are looking to raise more money again, six months after a seed round, because we are in the lucky position where we are gaining a lot of traction very quickly," said founder and chief executive officer Peter Foley (29).

The company sells home health-screening kits developed in-house. Originally offering STD-testing kits, it has since expanded to cancer screening - including tests for bowel cancer, HPV, prostate cancer and the cancer-causing BRCA genetic mutation.

Clients post back their kits, which are diagnosed by lab partners. They are then given a diagnosis via a secure online messaging system, with support services available for positive diagnoses, including same-day appointments with nearby doctors. The service provides a direct channel between labs and patients, cutting out the middleman.

It started life selling online, but recently expanded onto the shop floor. The company has partnered up with around 100 chemists where patients can buy its kits and get tested in-store with the help of pharmacists. Stockists include the McCabe and Haven pharmacy chains.

The €2m fundraising round will be used to fund international expansion, Foley said.

Let's Get Checked already sells into Europe and has medical partners in several European countries. It wants to move into the US.

Foley came up with the idea for Let's Get Checked which completing a Masters degree in medical diagnostics at Smurfit Business School.

Data he observed on how health insurers are compensated showed that hospitals around the world were failing to implement early-screening programmes for cancer and other serious diseases.

"Catching something like bowel cancer a year early is the difference between life or death" he said. "We want to take the burden off hospitals and give consumers control."

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