Digital health firm Wellola raises €2.2m

Sonia Neary’s Wellola plans to accelerate its expansion and meet growing demand for digital healthcare programs across the UK and Ireland.

Digital health business Wellola has raised €2.2m in a funding round led by Elkstone with additional funding from Enterprise Ireland and Bay Advisory.

The latest investment brings Wellola’s total funding to date to €4m and will accelerate market expansion to meet demand.

“Digital interventions like ours can address health inequalities by being scalable, affordable, and accessible”

Founded in 2016 by Sonia Neary (Chartered Physiotherapist and CEO), Wellola builds innovative patient management solutions to deliver high-quality care in a rapidly changing environment.

The digital future of patient communication

“At Wellola, we are transforming healthcare delivery for both patients and health professionals through fully interoperable innovation,” said Sonia Neary, CEO at Wellola.

“Digital interventions like ours can address health inequalities by being scalable, affordable, and accessible. This investment will enable us to further enhance our Portasana patient care and communication platform and also expand our footprint across the UK, ultimately empowering healthcare professionals to deliver more efficient, effective, and personalised care to their patients.”

Wellola’s expansion comes at a time of growing demand for digital health solutions, driven by the need for more accessible and patient-centric care delivery models. Hospital overcrowding, increased waiting times, and an over-extended infrastructure continues to plague healthcare systems across Europe.

Last year, Ireland reached a record high for hospital overcrowding while two in three doctors in the UK suffered moral distress. Wellola aims to change this by providing even more hospitals and community-based clinics with the digital communication tools needed to deliver healthcare outside of a hospital setting.

Built by clinicians, major healthcare organisations including Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, the North East London Foundation Trust and Birmingham Community NHS Trust have already deployed Wellola’s award-winning Portasana platform.

Portasana has enabled one NHS Trust department alone to reduce the need for return appointments by 30%, saving it approximately £325,000 a year.

In a representative evaluation of over 600 patients across the UK using education courses featured on the platform:

  • 95% Have a better understanding of their conditions
  • 91% Feel more confident about managing their condition
  • 88% Feel more confident about what to do if their condition gets worse
  • 59% Have been to hospital less frequently

“Wellola is revolutionising how hospitals and clinics care for and communicate with their patients,” said Barry Brennan, Partner at Elkstone.

“As Ireland’s largest early-stage venture fund, we are always on the lookout for innovative Irish founders making an impact both at home and abroad. We are excited to support the team at Wellola as they continue to usher in a new era of healthcare in hospitals right across Ireland, the UK and Europe.”

Wellola will use the additional capital to accelerate market expansion across Europe and plans to recruit technical and operational staff across Ireland and the United Kingdom.

Ruth McAvoy of Enterprise Ireland added: “Wellola has developed an international reputation for innovation and service delivery and Enterprise Ireland is proud to back this funding round which will see Sonia Neary and the Wellola team continue to expand in the UK and Europe.  Wellola’s technology brings benefits to both patients and healthcare systems and will play a critical role in the rapidly evolving healthcare sector.”

  • Bank of Ireland is welcoming new customers every day – funding investments, working capital and expansions across multiple sectors. To learn more, click here

John Kennedy
Award-winning editor John Kennedy is one of Ireland's most experienced business and technology journalists.