In my life, I’ve never felt more helpless and enraged than when I lost my mother-in-law, Clarette, in 2016. She passed away suddenly after being discharged home from the hospital. We all thought her discharge meant that she was on the road to full recovery, however, we couldn’t have imagined that the opposite was true. She was alone when she died and I wonder everyday whether this could have been prevented.
Throughout my career, people have characterized me as relentless. This is only partially true: relentless is the second half of the equation or output. The first half — the input — is passion. My passion is fueled by my desire and intense focus to create impact: to solve problems we collectively face and change a particular status quo.. Losing my mother-in-law shook our family to its core and generated a visceral, relentless desire to effect change. I then spent years investigating how common this occurrence is, what are its costs, and what can be done to change the system to save lives.
Diving deep into the world of post-hospitalization, I consumed everything I could about the recovery process. It turns out that the healthcare ecosystem primarily focuses on the superficial aspects of adherence to medical discharge instructions. However, what’s been proven to really drive durable recovery are behavioral health support (BH) for mental health and health behavior changes. . Numerous research papers demonstrate that over 50% of readmissions are preventable by using evidence-based interventions focusing on BH supporting people in making health behavior changes and helping people with depression and anxiety that is so common after a hospitalization. I suddenly realized that an incredible amount of human suffering is preventable; it blew my mind.
This revelation led to my next step: relentless pursuit of a solution to this catastrophic problem and the formation of Laguna Health. Given my background, I knew that bringing technology and data together will positively impact human lives. Together with my amazing, dedicated team, our shared goal is to educate all players in the ecosystem — employers, health plans, and health systems — to realize that being discharged home without the right support is as careless as driving without a seatbelt. It is now my life’s mission for Laguna to become the standard of care for post-hospitalization recovery throughout the world.
My focus of what is versus what could be relentlessly drives my passion to build a company that ensures successful recovery. Our technology, data, and methodologies will serve to shorten disability and dramatically reduce preventable readmissions. The result is measured in saved lives and billions of dollars. Most importantly, we’re working every day to create a world where my mother-in-law could have received the care she needed and be with us today.
I look forward to creating this world with the help of some of the most talented people to ever work on such a large problem that affects us all.
Yoni is an entrepreneur with a data-driven approach to finding solutions to real world problems. He began his career as a software engineer at Microsoft, and built on that experience to become a founding member at the patent litigation insurance business RPX Corp (NASDAQ: RPXC). Next, Yoni co-founded Koru Ventures, which was integrated into Fortress Investment Group where he led over $500M of equity and debt investments. As Laguna CEO and co-founder, Yoni brings his relentless pursuit of problem solving to improve people’s lives. Yoni received a dual Computer Science and Business Degree from Tel Aviv University, and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Yoni is happily married to Ilanit and enjoys spending quality time with their three kids.