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Startup VoCare Inc. might move to find venture capital dollars

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A Lebanon-based startup wants to build a call center here and add up to 300 jobs, but state and local officials are struggling with a big obstacle to keeping the company here: a lack of early-stage venture capital.

VoCare Inc. has designed a service that can provide 24-hour-a-day remote monitoring and live communications between home-bound seniors and their primary care doctors. It is trying to raise $4 million in capital to launch its service.

Since it can provide the service from anywhere in the country, VoCare is mulling a move to South Carolina, Florida or Texas. But the company is also talking to economic officials in Indiana, said company spokesman Tim Tuttle.

“It really is a national program. So they could put it anywhere,” Tuttle said. But, he added, VoCare founder Steve Peabody “would truly like to stay in the Indianapolis area.”

VoCare recently signed a pilot partnership with Indianapolis-based American Health Network, a 200-physician practice, and researchers at Indiana University, who will help test its TeleHealth System. Also participating in the pilot is Wisconsin-based Marshfield Clinic.

In a statement, VoCare officials said they would make a location decision in the next 120 days.

“We have strong ties to Indiana and the Midwest, but we need to look at all options in determining the best place for our business,” Peabody said in the statement. “We need to operate in the most cost-effective environment possible to keep the cost of our VoCare TeleHealth System affordable.”

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