News: Applications are open!

Elmwood has today [Monday 16th April] opened applications for STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and maths) entrepreneurs innovating in consumer health to join Elmwood LaunchPod, a 12-week accelerator programme starting in June 2018.

Elmwood LaunchPod is seeking to collaborate with innovators across the STEAM disciplines to create solutions that will connect individuals with their health and change the dynamics of how they engage the healthcare system. The accelerator programme opens against the backdrop of a need for a shift in focus in healthcare: a move away from diagnosis and treatment to prevention where increasing emphasis on individuals to proactively manage their health is becoming a fundamental cornerstone of health management.

The future of consumer health management

With only 4 per cent of the total NHS budget spent on prevention, healthcare providers are unable to focus resources sufficiently on the prevention of long-term health conditions versus the provision of expensive healthcare at the moment of crisis (i.e. emergency care). Insufficient emphasis is being placed on stimulating innovation that improves the dynamic relationship that people have with their health (prevention) and their health system (engagement & monitoring).

With an ageing population, the prognosis for the health of our communities is becoming more complex and resulting in mounting pressure on healthcare professionals to deliver services more efficiently and effectively. To address these pressures, the focus of healthcare is shifting from diagnosis and treatment to prevention, placing ever-increasing emphasis on individuals to proactively manage their own health. Elmwood’s goal is to create an environment in which the next generation of innovators can play together regardless of domain expertise, taking advantage of anti-disciplinary ability to seize the opportunity to revolutionise the healthcare sector.

Elmwood is looking for start-ups that apply creative or design-thinking to deliver consumer-centred solutions, as well as those that apply emerging technologies such as AI, automation, robotics and Augmented Reality to improve consumer health. By bringing multi-disciplinary businesses into one community, the programme aims to create a unique environment where design and systems thinking will shape how people connect with their health and improve their quality of life.

A tailored 12-week accelerator programme

Participants will benefit from a dedicated programme, receiving insight, mentoring and management support from a world-class community of specialists. Access to large corporate clients in the area of consumer health management will also be available.

The programme will cover areas designed to explore how consumers can better understand their health and engage with healthcare professionals, along with the opportunity to develop and test consumer facing health solutions in a real setting. This will result in a refined market offer built on the principles of systems and design centred thinking, a sharpened business plan, and a business ready to take its next step.

Situated in UK’s foremost smart city

Situated in Leeds, Elmwood LaunchPod is located in one of the UK’s foremost smart cities. Leeds is home to more than 250 medtech companies and 22% of UK’s digital health jobs are based there. The region offers a unique and influential healthcare ecosystem providing excellent opportunity for investment and growth. Leeds offers an easily accessible, ready-made population sample for health innovators that is representative of a cross-section of the UK populations to efficiently deliver projects of scale and a rich pool of talent.

Steve Gatfield, chairman at Elmwood, Elmwood LaunchPod mentor, and serial entrepreneur: “This accelerator programme arrives at a pivotal moment in the evolution of the digital economy, one where the potential of health data is self-evident and one where consumer trust is under considerable threat. In this next phase of the digital economy, how trust is designed in as an integral component of a product or service will be of utmost importance. Applying design- and systems-thinking, as well as designing trust into the essentials of the innovations we sponsor and support will be at the very heart of the Elmwood LaunchPod.”

Sarah Dear, managing partner at Elmwood and managing director of Elmwood LaunchPod, commented: “We’re proud to be supporting the aspirations of health-focused entrepreneurs and investing in the economic prospects of the region.

“This is fantastic opportunity to shape the future of consumer health experiences, improving people’s lives propelled by the power of design. We’re looking forward to helping start-ups in a creative and innovative environment to realise their aspirations, so they can develop into successful businesses and are excited to see the range of applications from health-focused entrepreneurs.”

The deadline to apply for the June 2018 programme is Friday 11th May.