Fort Lauderdale Doing Wellness Well

Fort Lauderdale Doing Wellness Well

By: Sara Warden

2 min read February 2020 — A study from the Macrothink Institute suggests that 8.7% of all payroll costs are tied to absenteeism, and when the bottom line is at stake, this makes business owners sit up and pay attention. This is perhaps the biggest reason why the global wellness industry has blown up in recent years and is now worth $4.5 trillion, according to the Global Wellness Institute.


When thinking of wellness, often fitness comes to mind. But wellness is an overarching industry that encompasses various sectors, including personal care, beauty and anti-aging; healthy eating, nutrition and weight loss; fitness and preventive medicine. The U.S. ranks No. 1 globally for its wellness industry, at a value of $52.5 billion.

One novel technology in the wellness industry is cryotherapy. It may sound like a technology of the future but iCRYO Cryotherapy is a leading company in the field, offering services that include whole body cryotherapy, cryo facials, infrared saunas, IV infusions, compression therapy, body sculpting, and localized cryotherapy. Launched in October 2015, the company now has an estimated annual revenue of $11.4 million.

iCRYO has 11 branches across New York, South Carolina, Alabama, Florida, Kansas and Texas, with another 12 coming soon. The Fort Lauderdale location will celebrate its grand opening next week, on Feb. 22.

It’s another in the series of developments as Fort Lauderdale quickly jumps on the wellness bandwagon. In fact, at the end of this month, the Riverside Hotel on Las Olas Boulevard will host the Employee Wellness Summit for Legal and Professional Services, a 1.5-day event that attracts sponsors such as insurance provider Cigna and healthcare company Optum.

FINN Partners, a public relations company with offices in Fort Lauderdale, also recently launched the FINN Wellness Collaborative, an initiative to elevate brands that support employee and consumer wellness. “Brands are seeking to secure a value-based loyalty connection to their customers,” said Cathy Chon, managing partner of CatchOn Communications, a FINN Partners affiliate, in a press release. “From safer home-cleaning products to clean-beauty cosmetics to sustainable fashion, consumers are making wellness a decision at check-point – and these brands need to be recognized for their contributions toward personal care and wellness.”

A 2016 Gallup poll showed that highly engaged workplaces can claim 41% lower absenteeism, 40% fewer quality defects, and 21% higher profitability. And in a period of extremely low unemployment, companies need to offer greater flexibility to retain the best talent, as 54% of office workers reported in the poll that they’d leave their job for one that offers flexible work time and 53% of employees say work-life balance and personal well-being are “very important” to them when considering a new job post.

“This new global data stream is meant to encourage business leaders and policymakers to see physical activity as a comprehensive sector, and one that’s critical in supporting lifestyles that are crucial to good health,” said Ophelia Yeung, one of the co-authors of the Global Wellness report.

To learn more, visit:

Growing Population Underpins Palm Beach Hospital Expansions

Growing Population Underpins Palm Beach Hospital Expansions

By: Sara Warden

2 min read February 2020 — Palm Beach’s population is growing and, with an increasing need for medical services, providers are getting innovative to avoid saturated doctors’ practices and hospitals. Last month, Florida overtook Texas as the No. 1 state for population growth, and West Palm Beach came in fifth in terms of growing cities. All this growth increases the need for infrastructure and services to serve the population.


The University of Miami announced this week it would be launching a concierge medicine program in Palm Beach that includes internal doctors and an on-site laboratory set to open in the fall. This would be the first UM medical systems concierge medical office in Palm Beach and would be located in 7,000 square meters of rented space at the Flagler Banyan Square mixed-use project.

Concierge services are an alternative to relieve the pressure from primary care providers. UHealth Premier services, for example, include an annual check-up, short waiting times, same or next-day appointments, and 24-hour phone contact with a doctor seven days a week, all for an annual membership fee. The clinic in West Palm Beach will specialize in urology, gastroenterology, cardiology, neurology and dermatology.

The news comes as Cleveland Clinic, Baptist Health and Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital also announced they would be expanding their presence in Palm Beach County by offering more services and locations for patients.

The Cleveland Clinic is reportedly considering building its own 50,000-square-meter facility in Downtown West Palm Beach, expanding from its current 7,400-square-foot practice in the Village Green Center in Wellington. It has reportedly made enquiries about a property on Okeechobee Boulevard, east of I-95.

NYU Langone Health also arrived in Palm Beach in November 2017 with its multispecialty ambulatory practice providing primary and cardiology care, often offering same-day appointments. “NYU Langone’s first Florida location in Delray Beach has been enthusiastically embraced by the community,” said Andrew Rubin, vice president, clinical affairs and ambulatory care at NYU Langone. “For this reason, we are extremely excited to introduce a second Florida practice in West Palm Beach to provide high-quality and personalized care to an even greater number of our patients who reside in Florida.”

Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital first expanded into Wellington with a 30,000-square-meter practice in 2019, but due to demand, it has already expanded its service offering, recruiting more doctors with specializations in disciplines such as cardiac and neurosurgery. “The demand for our outpatient rehabilitation services is well above our expectations,” said Caitlin Stella, managing director of the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital to the Palm Beach Post. “We are bringing the more complex programs faster than expected.”


To learn more about our interviewees, visit:

Addressing Health Disparities in South Jersey

Addressing Health Disparities in South Jersey

By: Yolanda Rivas

2 min read February 2020 — The healthcare and education sectors are significant contributors to the economic growth in the South Jersey region. Amid this growth, healthcare leaders are focusing on making healthcare accessible to the underserved population. 


According to the latest Leading Health Indicators Profile Report Index, the access to primary care for the state was not met as of 2017 and there is little or no detectable change in the trend. However, the objectives related to the infant death rate, the death rate due to coronary heart disease and teen obesity have been met, while the objectives for childhood immunization are improving. The leading health indicators are part of the Healthy New Jersey 2020 objectives to communicate high-priority health issues and actions to address them. 

Private and nonprofit healthcare organizations are also playing a key role in addressing healthcare disparities across the state. Such is the case of the charitable, nonprofit organization Inspira Health, which is present in two of the poorest counties in the state: Cumberland County and Salem County. 

“The social determinants of care are problems that cross areas; they are not necessarily healthcare-related. But our goal is to take care of people who live near here and who need our help,” John DiAngelo, president & CEO of Inspira Health, told Invest:. “We have been able to do that for the 20 years that I’ve been with Inspira Health. In fact, we are the only hospital in Cumberland County,” he said. 

Access to basic health treatment due to transportation and affordability is also a big challenge in the region. One of the largest private employers in South Jersey, Virtua Health, is looking to make healthcare accessible to the underserved through its mobile and home-based programs. Virtua Health President and CEO Dennis W. Pullin said in an interview with Invest: that its health system has re-invested over $400 million in the treatment and prevention of chronic health issues over the last five years. 

“We also have an active mobile program, in which we take certain services closer to where our patients live or work. For instance, our mobile pediatric unit provides screening for lead blood levels, flu shots and other services that many times are not available to children due to transportation or affordability issues. We also have a mobile mammography unit, with which we provide over 900 free mammograms yearly to women who are uninsured or underinsured. We have a mobile farmers’ market to provide fruits and vegetables to people at a below-wholesale cost. This year, we distributed over 75,000 pounds of fresh produce,” Pullin said.

Education and awareness are also big factors in the path to make health more accessible. Rothman Orthopaedic Institute is focusing on creating more partnerships to provide affordable care and improve community health, while raising awareness in the communities they serve. 

“We look at the social determinants of health and we do community outreach programs to help raise awareness of ways to improve bone and musculoskeletal health in the communities. We are ahead of the game in understanding what needs to be done to reduce costs,” Rothman Orthopaedic Institute’s president, Alexander Vaccaro, said in an interview with Invest:. “We are looking to create more relationships with healthcare systems and health insurance companies. That is the right thing to do. We are working together with multiple stakeholders to make healthcare safer and more affordable.” 

The Healthy New Jersey 2020 objective is to increase the proportion of adults aged 18 and older with a personal doctor or healthcare provider to 90.0 percent. According to the most recent data from New Jersey State Health Assessment Data, in 2017, 79.2% of New Jerseyans reported having at least one person they think of as their personal doctor or healthcare provider. 


To learn more about our interviewees, visit:

Inspira Health: 

Virtua Health:

Rothman Orthopaedic Institute: 


Spotlight On: Christopher Lam, Partner, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP

Spotlight On: Christopher Lam, Partner, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP

By: Felipe Rivas

2 min read February 2020 — Charlotte’s growth continues to attract a gamut of industries and talent into the region. As a result, the legal needs of businesses are evolving along with the diversification of the local economy, expanding the opportunities for legal professionals in the Queen City. Charlotte’s cost of living and sophisticated legal services rival the likes of New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings Partner Christopher Lam told Invest: Charlotte. The business diversity is driving the need for expertise in compliance and data privacy. Additionally, there is a great emphasis to provide access to justice to all residents via pro bono legal services or by committing financial resources to community agencies in the region, Lam said. 

Q: How has the legal landscape changed with so much economic growth in the region?

A: From a legal perspective, a lot of firms from outside North Carolina decided to set up an office here, and not all of those have remained. According to American Lawyer, however, there are 59 law firms with a Charlotte office that are not headquartered here. This remains a very popular place to be for lawyers and that’s because of the way our business community has diversified.

We are known as a banking and financial services hub, and while this is still a key part of our economy, we are so much more than that, with energy, manufacturing, fintech and other sectors emerging. That diversification is good for us as lawyers too, as it better equips us to weather a potential downturn. For example, our firm has experts in multiple practice areas and industries, which allows us to serve clients with those needs and protects us against a downturn in one or two particular sectors.

Q: How have the legal needs of companies evolved as new technologies and developments emerge?

A: The core legal needs for businesses have largely remained the same – corporate, employment, litigation, real estate. But with new regulations, there is a greater need for expertise in compliance, specifically in data privacy, and particularly with new regulations such as GDPR and CCPA going into effect. That impacts almost every company. At Bradley, we have two of only a handful of lawyers in the country who are board-certified privacy lawyers, and we have an additional deep bench of lawyers who are CIPP-US certified. We have been well-positioned to help companies navigate these new regulations. 

Q: How do you think the private sector and public officials must work together to keep growth sustainable?

A: Charlotte has a proud legacy of business leadership in issues of community development and public policy. Our business leaders have long been champions of these initiatives and we certainly think we at Bradley are a part of that effort. It is important as corporate citizens that we recognize that the better we make our community as a whole, the better it is for everyone.

Q: How does the Charlotte legal market compare with other markets such as Chicago or New York?

A: Those cities are larger and more diverse and sometimes those legal markets can seem more attractive, whether it be a higher salary or more opportunities. In Charlotte, however, because of the diversity of the business community, we have sophisticated legal services here to rival the likes of New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C. We also have a cost of living that is more advantageous, meaning lawyers can have great opportunities with a lower cost of living. That’s the best of both worlds.

Q: What are the main challenges facing the Charlotte market today?

A: Most of the 5,500 lawyers in Mecklenburg County are not working in big firms or representing large companies. And there are thousands of residents in the broader Charlotte community who have legal needs but cannot afford legal services. As current president of the Mecklenburg County Bar, my time spent working with groups like the Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy has emphasized that the greatest challenge for lawyers here is our responsibility to ensure there is access to justice for all. We have a professional obligation to do so. We can do this in a couple primary ways – providing pro bono legal services ourselves or committing our financial resources to the agencies doing the heavy lifting every day. That issue is not unique to Charlotte, but as lawyers we have a particular responsibility to help ensure there is access to justice. I am very proud to say our lawyers at Bradley live into that. As but one example, we have a partnership with the Bank of America legal department through which we work with Safe Alliance to represent clients who need domestic violence protective orders. 

To learn more about our interviewee, visit:

South Florida CBD Industry Welcomes New Regulatory Clarity

South Florida CBD Industry Welcomes New Regulatory Clarity

By: Sara Warden

2 min read January 2020 — The value of the CBD (cannabidiol) market is expected to surpass $20 billion globally by 2024 and Florida is taking steps to ensure it is well-positioned to take advantage of the market. But opening up a new industry to commercialization comes with teething problems and Palm Beach legislators may struggle to keep up.



 “We’re witnessing CBD maturing from a cannabis sub-category into a full-blown industry of its own,” said Roy Bingham, Co-Founder and CEO of BDS Analytics in a press release. “Our growth forecast for the CBD market, across all distribution channels, predicts a compound annual growth rate of 49 percent by 2024. This is a great opportunity for all involved, but it means the road ahead will include decisions that need to be informed by the best possible data.”

After CBD edibles were legalized in Canada in October 2019, companies selling these products are struggling to keep ahead of demand. But in Florida, it is legislators who are feeling the strain of regulating this new industry. Amendment 2 legalized CBD use for medical purposes in the state and the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-based CBD products federally. But Florida state legislation previously did not differentiate between marijuana (which contains THC) and hemp (which contains mostly CBD), meaning CBD products are simultaneously legal and illegal in Florida.

But on July 1, 2019, a new law took effect that allowed authorities to regulate CBD and hemp use. “Prior to these rules being adopted and taking effect, we didn’t have regulatory authority,” cannabis director at Florida’s Department of Agriculture Holly Bell told The News Service. “Now we do, and we have that up and going so that we can make sure consumers are protected.”

As a result, Palm Beach’s CBD industry is picking up speed. As part of the regulation, companies selling CBD products must apply for a permit that costs $650 per year. There already are a number of companies in Palm Beach County, including Curaleaf, Earth Florida, Nutrition World and Trulieve.

Zach Bader, co-founder of the USA CBD Expo held the conference in Miami Beach in May last year and told the Miami Herald that the South Florida market is brimming with potential. “There is a really high concentration of retail stores here that are either selling the product or are very interested in learning more,” he said. “We are seeing this industry start to percolate. A year ago, it wasn’t where it is today.” 

Bader applauded the efforts of state authorities to regulate the industry. “Whether you’re in the CBD industry or manufacturing Cheerios, you can’t go out there and make health claims without clinical trials. That’s a standard,” he said.

The Department of Agriculture headed by Nikki Fried is providing workshops to try to eliminate the uncertainty and harness a promising industry for the state. “Having that opportunity and allowing entrepreneurs to do what they do and start the research aspects is my vision for the state of Florida,” she said at the first workshop in Broward County.


To learn more about our interviewees, visit:


Philadelphia Building on Life Sciences Success

Philadelphia Building on Life Sciences Success

By: Sara Warden

2 min read January 2020 — Last March, Philadelphia came in at an impressive eighth in CBRE’s ranking of top life sciences markets. Now, almost a year on, the city’s life sciences industry shows no sign of losing momentum – in fact, it is gathering speed.

Last week, the Philadelphia Science Center announced it would award $200,000 each to three Philadelphia-based researchers to develop their early-stage concepts for cancer treatment and diagnosis. The individuals – Ian Henrich, a postdoctoral researcher at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia; Emily Day, a bioengineer at the University of Delaware; and Haim H. Bau, a professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Pennsylvania – are developing novel technologies to progress the understanding, detection and prevention of cancers, HIV and sickle cell disease.

This strong focus as a city on the importance of cutting-edge research is one factor that attracts multi-million-dollar companies from around the United States to invest in Philadelphia, which in turn attracts auxiliary services such as specialized logistics and software companies. Digital marketing firm Imre Health, which represents AstraZeneca’s diabetes and respiratory portfolios, announced its decision to establish an office in Philadelphia late last year for just that reason.

“We have carved out a niche at Imre, redefining the patient and HCP experience through digital channels, and Philadelphia is the [ripest] with that kind of talent even compared to New York,” Imre’s President and Partner Jeff Smokler told PR Week. “We view this Philadelphia office as a major tool to help us manage growth and ensure that we’re keeping pace with service needs and requirements. We see the Philadelphia office as dousing the industry with more gasoline.”

But the real test of the success of any company is its ability to list on a stock exchange. In 2019, three of Philadelphia’s life science companies went public, raising nearly $200 million in IPOs. Arch Street-based biotech company Cabaletta Bio raised $74.8 million. Galera Therapeutics, which is developing a treatment that reduces harmful effects that stem from radiation therapy, raised $60 million, with an option for investors to purchase an additional 750,000 shares. And in November, Tela Bio, a surgical reconstruction company developing novel material for tissue reinforcement, raised $52 million in exchange for the 4 million shares it leveraged.

It doesn’t stop there. In October, Anpac Bio, a Chinese bio-medical science company, chose Philadelphia for its US headquarters and second clinical laboratory. “We are very excited to be moving forward with our U.S. corporate headquarters and laboratory in Pennsylvania. The state has a mature life sciences ecosystem and a supportive startup environment that will allow our U.S. business to lay the foundation for future success,” said Shaun Gong, Anpac’s U.S. president, in a press release.

To learn more, visit:


Spotlight On: Daryl Tol, President & CEO, AdventHealth — Central Florida Division

Spotlight On: Daryl Tol, President & CEO, AdventHealth — Central Florida Division

By: Yolanda Rivas

2 min read January 2020 — The increase in free-standing healthcare locations across the nation continues to be a great part of many healthcare institutions’ renovation efforts. Faith-based, nonprofit organization AdventHealth has been expanding its free-standing locations in response to this trend. AdventHealth is also re-designing its system to adjust to the diverse population moving to Florida. President and CEO of AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division Daryl Tol spoke with Invest: about the network’s efforts to respond to national and local trends. 

What are the fastest-growing areas of service and care in Orlando?


There are several. One is the free-standing emergency room. We have added quite a number of free-standing locations with doctors and emergency services in areas of need, instead of having to build a whole hospital. We are growing our academic work around community cancer research. The cardiovascular institute is seeing high demand as well. We are also redefining our primary care model to include virtual care, which will allow patients to connect via video or text messages with their doctor.

What has been the impact of the healthcare industry as a dominant growth driver in the region?


If you look at Florida, and Central Florida in particular, growth is happening here in a significant way. We are managing a considerable line of growth in the senior and multicultural population. People from all kinds of backgrounds are moving into the state. We are responding to that in the way we design our system. We provide care for seniors and for people from all kinds of different backgrounds to communicate more clearly, enhance translation services and build locations in new communities, including communities of need that haven’t had healthcare historically. We believe our network should be accessible to everybody.


What are some of Advent Health’s strategies for innovation in providing quality care and patient experience?


The Center for Genomic Health is an important effort. It will focus on personalization around the patient’s personal profile. It will help us understand which medications and types of treatments work better for each person and identify risk factors. We can start really investing in each patient’s particular needs. A second effort is putting technology in the hands of consumers through our mobile app, which will launch its 2.0 version this year. It will alert people about care that is needed, help them in the scheduling of certain services and create price transparency. We have also launched a command center — the largest of its kind in the nation, both in size and scope of operations — where artificial intelligence will be used to provide the best care in how people get to our locations.


We’re a significant leader in robotic surgery. For a long time, our Nicholson Center has been a training center for robotic surgery. We have a number of robots there that surgeons use to perform surgery. In 2018, we were the first to purchase and perform a procedure with a new robot. We see robot technology improving, and we’re on the leading edge of that work as well.


To learn more about our interviewee, visit:


Orlando top city for behavioral health technicians

Orlando top city for behavioral health technicians

By: Yolanda Rivas

2 min read January 2020 — The rapid advancements in technology and innovation are significantly disrupting the work environment across all industries, making many health and life sciences-related professions some of the fastest-growing across the globe. A recent report on 2020 emerging jobs places behavioral health technician as one of the fastest-growing positions around the world, and Orlando is one of top the cities for this career. 


LinkedIn’s third annual U.S. emerging jobs report identified the top 15 up and coming jobs during the last five years. Artificial intelligence and data science continue to show rapid growth and heavy influence in many sectors. However, according to the report, the rise in insurance coverage for mental health is increasing the demand for behavioral health professionals. 

Orlando ranked as one of the cities where the jobs are for behavioral health technicians, which is the only job on the list that generally doesn’t require a four-year degree. The report estimates the hiring rate for these professionals has grown an average of 31% year over year since 2015. 

The average annual salary for a behavioral health technician in Orlando is $27,817, as of Jan. 2, 2020, according to online employment marketplace ZipRecruiter. The national average salary is $30,080 a year. ZipRecruiter’s recent job postings show an active marketplace for behavioral health technician jobs in Orlando and its surrounding area. 

Behavioral health technicians work along doctors, primary counselors, therapeutic staff and other healthcare professionals to assist in the treatment of adults or children with substance use, developmental disorders or mental health conditions. 

The report suggests that increased health insurance coverage for mental health and substance abuse treatment are likely the reasons for the increased demand for these professionals. The State of Mental Health in America 2018 report states that 61.7% of adults with any mental illness (AMI) in Florida did not receive treatment. The national average is 55.8%. 

The top industries hiring behavioral health professionals are: mental healthcare, hospital and healthcare, individual and family services, education management, health and wellness and fitness, the 2020 emerging jobs report shows.  


To learn more, visit:

LinkedIn 2020 Emerging Jobs Report: 

Healthcare in Philadelphia Going from Strength to Strength

Healthcare in Philadelphia Going from Strength to Strength

By: Sara Warden

2 min read January 2020 — Innovation in Philadelphia’s healthcare industry has long been recognized as exemplary, and it served as a focal point of Philly’s B.PHL Innovation Fest held in September. Recent developments show that healthcare pioneers were right to bet on Philadelphia.

It’s only a week in and already 2020 has been a big year for healthcare in Philadelphia. Healthcare software company Repisodic announced this week it has raised $1.75 million from a private stock sale led by VC company American Enterprise Ventures. Repisodic was nominated among just 17 early-stage companies that received a total of $3 million in pre-seed funding from Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania in 2018.

The technology produced by the company is based on patient discharge care and was catalyzed by the “discharge planning rule” enacted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in November, which mandated that patients “be in the driver’s seat, playing an active role in their care transitions to ensure seamless coordination of care,” according to CMS Administrator Seema Verma.

Repisodic allows patients to access a list of post-acute care providers in a seamless and easy way, with search functions tailored to the patient’s specific medical records and requirements. “The sheet of paper (given to post-acute care patients by hospitals on discharge) may have names and addresses and phone numbers, but not a whole lot of other information,” Mike Cwalinski, the company’s co-founder and CEO, said to Philadelphia Business Journal. “We help patients make better and faster decisions at the time of discharge.”

Elsewhere, Philly-based gene therapy company Spirovant Sciences was last week acquired by Japanese pharma company Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma in a $3 billion transaction. “(Sumitomo) is incredibly committed to Spirovant and to gene therapy, particularly the work going on here in the Philadelphia area,” said Joan Lau, Spirovant’s CEO, in an interview with Philadelphia Business Journal. “They will be spending time here to get to know the area more intimately.”

Spirovant’s gene therapies aim to repair mutations that come as a side-effect from cystic fibrosis and cause difficulties with breathing. Earlier in the year Spirovant had been acquired by New York-based Roivant, which sold its ownership stake in five companies – one of which was Spirovant – to Sumitomo. “I think it’s a testament to our underlying technology from the University of Iowa and CHOP,” said Lau when asked about being acquired twice in one year. “We’ve been able to show strong preclinical data.”


To learn more, visit: