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Spring 2014
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Graham Gardner ’95 MD’99
Nothing Ventured

A new platform harnesses Big Data.

Graham Gardner ’95 MD’99 knew he probably wouldn’t stay in medical practice for long. While he had chosen a career in medicine to help make a difference, he recognized that he could have an equal, if not bigger, impact outside of clinical care. He’d watched his father launch a successful biotech company and felt the irresistible allure to “help create things that hadn’t been there before.”

After internal medicine residency and cardiology fellowship at Beth Israel Deaconess in Boston, Gardner went to business school at Harvard. He joined Highland Capital Partners after graduation.

“That was a great platform to build companies from,” Gardner says. What’s more, he could meld his interests by crafting companies that drove health care forward.

His first success story was Generation Health. Their product created a formulary of genetic tests that insurance companies could use to implement testing for beneficiaries. Gardner was chief medical officer of the company through its acquisition by CVS Caremark.

Then it was back to Highland Capital to develop the next great idea. In 2010, Gardner and colleagues launched Kyruus, a Big Data startup that helps analyze, manage, and engage large networks of physicians. (“Big Data” is a buzzword for the tremendous amounts of information that can be collected in data sets.) “We analyze billions of data points from thousands of sources to highlight the relative strengths and weaknesses of every physician,” he says. “We then build applications to help organizations optimize their compliance, network development, and referral management strategies.”

He likens it to the approach to building baseball teams shown in the movie Moneyball: “Only when you understand the statistics can you build a team that best coordinates care for patients.”

While he enjoyed medicine, Gardner says he doesn’t miss day-to-day practice. “While I was taking care of patients, I couldn’t do anything else but that. It was too important not to be the first and last thing I did every day. Outside of medicine, I can develop tools to make health care delivery better. “I hope I’m still making a difference, just in a different way.”—Kris Cambra

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