The Health Sciences Entrepreneurs program at Northeastern University is hosting an on-campus event on the evening of April 11th entitled “Digital Health Industry Transformation: Can Digital Health be the Key Catalyst for Enabling Value Based Care?”. Participating in this great event is different players in the digital health value chain. This includes tech innovation companies Athena Health, Twine Health and Brain Power, as well as Flare Capital Partners who will bring an investor’s perspective and viewpoints from their healthcare IT portfolio companies.
The healthcare industry is in the middle of a transformative shift fueled by a range of new innovation and pressure to reduce the cost of care. Ubiquity of consumer smartphones, tablets and wearable devices with their inherent mobility, data science, analytics and web/cloud technologies are enabling a new digital health landscape aimed at improving the patient experience, quality of care, Provider workflow and underlying economics.
A range of new digital health products / services are emerging beyond just the shift from paper to electronic medical records. This includes TeleHealth, mHealth applications, patient engagement platforms, remote patient monitoring via Internet of Things devices, clinical decision support systems and population health management to name a few. Many of these innovations help fuel a shift towards patient directed care, home therapies, high risk patients, new forms of patient-clinician interactivity, and operationalize dramatic policy and procedure change with Providers. Much of this change is ultimately driven (rationalized) by digital health data, quality and cost metrics. Many organizations are coming to this Digital Health realization that they must dramatically redesign and align their business around these new technologies in order to survive long term, versus simply conforming to required regulatory mandates such as the Affordable Care Act and Meaningful Use.
Massachusetts Governor Baker, Boston Mayor Walsh and other leaders from across state government, academic, healthcare and the technology sectors have taken noticed of this transformative change and recently announced a public-private partnership at the beginning of this year (Massachusetts Launches Comprehensive Digital Health Initiative). This new digital health effort aims to build upon the strong base of life sciences and healthcare IT companies, wealth of world-class hospitals, and venture capital driven incubation in the state. I applaud this team with the foresight to recognize the importance of this new digital health ecosystem and the desire to further seed Massachusetts as a mecca for innovation and change in this new sector of the industry.
Aside from its strong research, academic and experiential learning contributions, Northeastern University is a strong player in the local innovation and health sciences communities. NU has a range of startup incubators, entrepreneurial programs and activities across campus (was also recently ranked #5 by Princeton Review and Forbes for entrepreneurial universities in the country). The Health Sciences Entrepreneurs (HSE) program at NU is focused exclusively on mentoring early stage health sciences ventures. As an HSE board member and mentor myself, we see digital health as a core foundational asset of many new ventures in our program. This tends to represent either a great new insertion point for change with lead customers or the ratifying source for quantifying tangible outcome or cost benefits for their new offering.
We look forward to a range of dialog with our panelists and hope to see you at the event on April 11th.