StartUp Health Colorado is ready for your applications, local health care entrepreneurs

StartUp Health Colorado launched Wednesday and announced their first partner. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
StartUp Health Colorado launched Wednesday and announced their first partner. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
StartUp Health Colorado launched Wednesday and announced their first partner. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)

Local health startups now have a chance to get connected with investors, accelerate their products and be exposed to new technology all in the same place.

Enter StartUp Health Colorado.

The new regional partnership with CU Anschutz, Children’s Hospital Colorado and UCHealth medical campus launched this Wednesday and several hundred people gathered at CU Anschutz medical campus to celebrate.

Founded in 2011, StartUp Health is the organization behind a massive, global health care reform initiative. Here in Colorado, that means a chance for 30 startups to get coaching and peer networking in the StartUp Health Academy.

Energy was high at the launch of StartUp Health Colorado at Krugman Conference Hall on the CU Anschutz medical campus. A jazz band plucked away as many major players in Colorado’s health care industry enjoyed cocktails, networked and slowly inched closer to the front of the tightly packed room.

All waited for StartUp Health CEO and co-founder Steven Krein to take the stage and deliver his optimistic message about the future of the health care industry.

StartUp Health Colorado launched Wednesday and announced their first partner. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
StartUp Health CEO and co-founder Steven Krein speaks to a crowd at CU Anschutz. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)

Krein spoke of his hope to introduce “re-imagination,” into a stagnant industry by creating regional hubs for collaborative innovation.

“Take a look around this room. This is a hospital campus, a medical campus, and hundreds of you turned out tonight to hear about entrepreneurship and innovation, engagement and re-imagination,” Krein said.

StartUp Health Colorado launched Wednesday and announced their first partner. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
CU Anschutz Chancellor Don Elliman laughs while linking arms with former Time Warner CEO Jerry Levin during an exercise. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)

StartUp Health hopes to unite entrepreneurs with investors and potential partners. And the educational institutions and hospitals in the Colorado regional affiliate will serve as living laboratories to accelerate product and technological development, while also reaping the benefit of new technologies.

“We are looking to transform how we care for kids, the most important way will be to embrace innovation–new ideas, technologies that meet our patients where they are at,” said Gil Peri, Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer at Children’s Hospital Colorado. “A majority of our patients are now families of millennial moms, so if you are not in the digital space, you are invisible.”

Following Krein’s speech was a panel moderated by Krein’s brother, Howard Krein, and featuring CU Anschutz Chancellor Don Elliman, former Time Warner CEO and HBO founder Jerry Levin, and venture partner Richard Foster.

The panelists emphasized that the health care industry, along with education, is far behind the times and in need of “creative destruction.”

“We know technology is going to change the [health care] landscape, so in our case the impetus for why we need to be looking ahead, and I mean, looking far ahead…is even more imperative than it was,” Elliman said, comparing technology’s potential impact on health care to its impact on media.

“We won’t recognize health care five years from now,” he added.

After the panel, Krein re-emerged to announce StartUp Health Colorado’s first partnership with local startup RXRevu, as well as to make an official call to action for ambitious health care entrepreneurs looking to join the StartUp Health Community.

After applying for one of 29 remaining positions, startups will have access to lifetime coaching through the academy, to Startup Health’s network of 30,000 industry leaders, entrepreneurs and investors the world over and to the living laboratories already present on CU Anschutz medical campus.

StartUp Health is looking for entrepreneurs with companies that promote three themes: improving patient outcomes, streamlining the patient experience and cutting down on health care costs.

The first application deadline is Dec. 9. Interested startups should apply via StartUp Health Colorado.

Multimedia business & healthcare reporter Chloe Aiello can be reached via email at caiello@denverite.com or twitter.com/chlobo_ilo.

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