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New healthcare tech startup is trying to re-define medical billing

Have you ever gotten a bill from your doctor, and tossed it aside, deciding it was too much to decode? Two guys from Cleveland want to help.

CLEVELAND — How frustrated do your medical bills make you? They're often complicated and difficult to understand. But a new tech healthcare start up is trying to change the way you not only get your bills, but also make it easier for you to pay them. 

It's called MedPilot and two of its three co-founders came home to Northeast Ohio to build their business.

Matt Buder Shapiro from Shaker Heights, Nathan Spoden from Mentor and Jacob Myers from San Francisco, started MedPilot in their mid-20s in New York City. 

But when it came time to expand, they packed up and moved to Cleveland, for a couple of reasons, Matt and Nathan wanted to come home and they recognized the city is prime for tech startup companies, especially involving healthcare.

In an unassuming building on East 55th that has a bit of a view of the lake on a sunny day, Matt Buder Shapiro and Nathan Spoden set up a brand new business called Medpilot. A tech company that helps patients communicate with their doctors and get a grip on their bills.

“You know those statements you get in the mail that you never understand? Medpilot makes it easier for you to understand those bills and makes it easier for you to pay those bills,” Spoden says.

The two men are native Clevelanders and saw an obvious niche as part of Northeast Ohio's booming healthcare industry. In less than a year they went from five to 34 employees, are already expanding their office space and plan to hire forty more. They've also tapped in to the region's investment dollars to help.

“So, when the opportunity arose to grow our company in Cleveland, we jumped on it and it's the perfect market for us. There's healthcare providers here, there's a great talent of resources, and it's been an incredible experience," Buder Shapiro said.

Alexandra Burtin left a medical sales job in Denver to come back home too. She's now Medpilot's director of strategy, identifying clients and building a sales team.

For her, coming home was cost effective.

"The cost of living here has been amazing, when you're thinking about buying a house Denver's just ridiculous right now,” she said.

Medical billing is a huge sticking point with consumers, and the company is hoping to one day handle the billing for the big players in town. But for now it's changing the way doctors communicate with their patients on their level.

“We look at a lot of different characteristics in order to inform our communication to the patient. We think that a 25 year old with a $50 bill should be treated a little bit differently than an 80 year old with a $5,000 bill, so we learn about the patient and find out what’s working and what’s not working," Buder Shapiro said.