An exclusive Tech Tribune Q&A with Mark Switaj, the founder and CEO of Roundtrip, which was honored in our:
Tell us the origin story of Roundtrip – what problem were you trying to solve and why?
It all began when I worked on an ambulance. I saw patients (neighbors) giving up on healthcare because the transportation experience was more painful than the care they would receive. The patient wasn’t engaging with the transportation as a part of the total care experience. As the company developed, we found 1-in-5 people give up on their healthcare with transportation as a leading cause.
What was the biggest hurdle you encountered in your journey?
We have an amazing team, and the guidance shared with me I pay forward: hire great people. Finding great folks takes time, focus, and patience. I’d lay down in slow moving traffic for my team.
What does the future hold for Roundtrip?
Everyone knows transportation is a problem for patients, with the elderly and underserved taking the brunt of it. By marrying healthcare data with ride data, we can look across disease states and populations to see where transportation has the greatest impact. For example, Medicare Advantage plans might best improve health outcomes by offering more rides to dialysis patients so they can comply with a high number of ongoing treatments and keep folks active in the community.
What are your thoughts on the local tech startup scene in Philadelphia?
We’re active in a few vibrant startup scenes, including Philadelphia and Richmond, and now the virtual world. I’m super hyped on Philly as we were just crowned Top Emerging Startup Ecosystem in the US, and I pay it forward by sitting on the board of Philadelphia Startup Leaders, the scene for emerging tech in Philly. Our technology team started in Richmond, and we have embraced an unstoppable creative crew from Orlando to Durham to LA, with plans to expand even more. Lighthouse Labs, a nationally recognized accelerator in Richmond, set the foundation for who we are as a mission-driven organization.
What’s your best advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Hire, serve, and mentor great people.