Richard (Rick) Kimball, Jr. is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of HEXL, Inc., a company seeking to change the reimbursement paradigms of the current healthcare system to improve overall patient outcomes, keep chronically ill patients stable, and lower healthcare costs.
Richard Kimball, Jr. had been an investment banker for top firms such as Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, where he headed accounts for healthcare banking and capital. In 2014, he co-founded Health x Longevity, Inc. (HEXL, Inc.), a healthcare technology startup, and is now the company’s CEO. He brings his expertise in investment banking to the healthcare industry, where his company’s goal is to lower healthcare costs, especially for chronically ill consumers.
Education and career
Kimball obtained his bachelor’s degree in Economics from Yale University in 1986, where he focused on International Finance, Mechanical Engineering, and Computer Science. In his senior year, he had written an essay on the Japanese bond futures market, which would presage his storied career as an investment banker.
His career kicked off at Morgan Stanley, rising to the position of Managing Director in nearly 14 years. The milestones of his Morgan Stanley stint include lead management for 140 public equity offerings and IPOs for big-ticket companies such as United Parcel Services and Pepsi Bottling. Here, he also made headway in the direction of healthcare, for which he developed the firm’s equity new issue business along with that of natural resources, consumer products, retail, and utilities. Moreover, Morgan Stanley expatriated him to Thailand and Indonesia, where he was instrumental to building the company’s presence. He would then make the rounds of Asia, particularly in countries such as Korea, China, Singapore, Malaysia, and the Philippines, to periodically cover operations.
Kimball then transitioned briefly to venture capital between 2000 and 2002, for the firm Millennium Technology Ventures. There, he had raised and managed a $160 million venture capital fund for nascent technology companies. He would, however, return to Morgan Stanley in 2002, but this time as head of Healthcare Services Investment Banking for three years.
It was, however, at Goldman Sachs, where he moved on April 2005, that the bulk of his healthcare investment banking expertise would flourish for seven years. He took the helm of the firm’s Healthcare Capital Markets and realized market share growth. As Partner Managing Director, he also oversaw a five-fold increase in healthcare investment banking business, while managing the company’s technological tracking systems for efficient interaction with clients.
Kimball’s focus on healthcare may have been underpinned by his investment banking experience, but his direct involvement in the issues and challenges confronting the sector was facilitated by his position as Trustee and Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Ralph Lauren Center for Cancer Care and Prevention. The Center is committed to the development of patient care models and support for research and education that address identified and specific needs of cancer patients.
Kimball’s six-year affiliation with the center soon led to a full-blown concentration on healthcare solutions and strategies at Accretive Health, a company in Chicago, Illinois that assists healthcare providers in delivering higher quality care, achieving financial sustainability, and enhancing operational stability. Kimball headed strategy, sales and marketing, and population health solutions while promoting the company’s revenue cycle management model to hospitals looking to improve patient engagement and embark on population health programs.
Currently, Kimball is heading HEXL, Inc., a healthcare technology startup that has been putting forward visionary ways to reduce healthcare costs incurred by chronically ill patients and deliver quality care that will significantly improve patient outcomes. Located in New York and San Francisco, HEXL’s technology designs are particularly trained on telehealth, virtual health, home healthcare, preventative care, and chronic disease management.
More crucially, HEXL is looking to reinvent the reimbursement paradigm, which would represent in the upheaval of costs, savings, and efficiency of healthcare processes. At its core, HEXL is all about the creation of population health programs that aim to keep the chronically ill stable and out of hospitals. The reimbursement paradigm is part of a network of care coordination practices that will facilitate disease management.
Kimball has written extensively on groundbreaking healthcare management principles that need to be espoused in the name of affordable access to healthcare services. He is vocal about the need for a value-based system, especially in light of recent legal fortifications to President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. According to him, this should replace the normative fee-for-service approach that had given rise to overpaid facilities and practitioners and redundant services arising from the failure of monitoring technologies such as electronic health data and remote communications between patients and practitioners.
Kimball sees in value-based care the prospect of reducing emergency care services and clipping supply-side financial incentives in the delivery of healthcare. Thus, Kimball emphasizes several technologies that support cost-effective processes. One of these is telehealth, which is increasingly relevant in managing conditions like Alzheimer’s disease. Another is wearable technology and other forms of mobile healthcare, which are triumphs of information technology in the service of patients and practitioners alike for proper diagnoses, monitoring, and at the minimum, tracking healthcare goals for disease prevention and overall wellbeing.
Kimball has identified key hindrances to the realization of a complete value-based healthcare industry. This is where his proposed standardized reimbursement paradigm finds purchase. He also identified healthcare’s slow adoption of technology as the main roadblock to patient-centered healthcare, a situation where innovations for common medical solutions exist but remain underemployed. A standardized reimbursement paradigm, he asserts, would have freed up such technologies and services toward general use. Healthcare is at the cusp of telemedicine; unfortunately, the latter cannot lend well to the present reimbursement paradigm.