TORONTO, July 29, 2020 /CNW/ – Virtual care is revolutionizing Canadian health care. Canadians are turning to their phones and tablets to connect virtually with a medical professional for physical and mental health concerns or even to fill a prescription. Today Sun Life announced a strategic commercial partnership and $32.7 million equity investment in Dialogue, Canada’s leading telemedicine provider. Sun Life will hold a minority ownership in Dialogue with customary rights to acquire additional equity.
This round of financing also includes follow-on investments by existing backers Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), Portag3 Ventures, White Star Capital, HV Holtzbrinck Ventures, First Ascent Ventures and Walter Ventures. National Bank Financial Inc. acted as financial advisor to Dialogue in this financing.
“The need for Canadians to have alternative ways to access health care continues to grow,” said Dave Jones, Senior Vice-President, Group Benefits, Sun Life Canada. “Virtual care is an important part of the future of Canadian health care. The combination of innovative technology and the necessity of social distancing during the pandemic has rapidly changed the virtual health care landscape. Our investment in Dialogue represents Sun Life’s commitment to helping Canadians live healthier lives through access to health care, whenever and wherever they need it. This investment is our next step, as we continue to innovate for our Clients and empower them to manage their health and well-being.”
“Virtual care will remain an essential resource now and in the future,” said Cherif Habib, CEO of Dialogue. “While we navigate the changing health care landscape, Dialogue is proud to provide a virtual health care service that is easy, convenient and helps keep Canadians safe at home. Having strong support from partners such as Sun Life allows us to remain focused on providing quality care and expanding our services to help millions of Canadians stay healthy.”
At Sun Life, helping people live healthier lives is an important part of our business and key focus area of the company’s sustainability plan. The COVID-19 pandemic has put a spotlight on the importance of expanding the traditional health care model. Virtual care, which provides access to medical practitioners in the comfort of home, helps people continue to physically distance and alleviate pressure on the Canadian health care system. Since the pandemic started, Dialogue has seen a sharp increase in usage of the virtual care service. The collaboration between Sun Life and Dialogue gives Canadians virtual access to medical care and connects them directly with a health care professional from anywhere in the country, at any time. The investment follows Sun Life’s roll out of Lumino Health Virtual Care, powered by Dialogue in March 2020.
Lumino Health Virtual Care
Lumino Health Virtual Care is offered to Sun Life Group Benefits Clients with an Extended Health Care (EHC) benefit. The virtual care service is powered by Dialogue and connects Canadians with local health care providers.
Clients can easily connect to the Lumino Health Virtual Care service through a mobile app or online. Once connected, the service will triage a Client before providing direct access to a nurse or physician. The service provides Clients with acute physical and mental health care, similar to medical services provided at a primary care clinic. A multi-disciplinary team will review symptoms, provide an assessment, create a personalized care plan, write prescriptions, and make referrals to specialists or in-person care if necessary.
About Sun Life
Sun Life is a leading international financial services organization providing insurance, wealth and asset management solutions to individual and corporate Clients. Sun Life has operations in a number of markets worldwide, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China, Australia, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia and Bermuda. As of March 31, 2020, Sun Life had total assets under management of $1,023 billion. For more information, please visit www.sunlife.com.
Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York (NYSE) and Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under the ticker symbol SLF.