Healthcare: Medicare startups get booster dose

GE Healthcare’s India Edison Accelerator initiative is helping startups to address several sectoral challenges in India

Aira Matrix is one of the startups, providing AI-based solutions for life sciences applications.

We are living in times when digital disruption in healthcare is not a choice, but a necessity. GE Healthcare, a leading medical technology company, has formed strategic alliances with growth stage MedTech startups through its India Edison Accelerator Program (incepted in 2019) to co-develop innovative solutions that can address challenges in the Indian healthcare sector. The Edison platform uses analytics, machine learning (MI), deep learning, and AI to identify actionable insights, prioritise workflows, and deliver personalised patient care. The startups in the current cohort (Cohort 3) are focusing on fields such as cardiology, oncology, and genomics.

Aira Matrix is one of the startups in this group, providing AI-based solutions for life sciences applications. Its solutions improve efficiency, diagnostic accuracy, and turnaround times in pathology, microbiology, and ophthalmology workflows for pharmaceutical and healthcare laboratories. “We derived immense benefit from the Edison Accelerator program,” says Chaith Kondragunta, CEO, Aira Matrix. “During the selection process, we realised that the focal point of our collaboration will be diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive solutions for prostate cancer. We were pleased to share a common goal with GE Healthcare of achieving cost-effective diagnostics, enhancing patient experiences, augmenting healthcare workflows, and realising high throughput processes across the care continuum.” The startup’s clients and partners include leading hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, CROs, and research labs around the world.

Qritive is another start-up to have benefitted from the programme. With a mission to make cancer diagnosis fast, accurate, and affordable, it offers AI-powered solutions that assist pathologists in cancer diagnosis. “Addressing this problem of healthcare can be challenging due to the fragmented nature of the market. GE Healthcare’s India Edison Accelerator program turned out to be the most impactful initiative Qritive has been a part of so far,” says its CTO & co-founder, Kaveh Taghipour.

“The startups featured in the third cohort are developing solutions that enable and promote a technology-backed healthcare ecosystem,” says Girish Raghavan, vice-president, Software Engineering, GE Healthcare. For instance, a startup from Cohort 3 is working on personalising patient care in oncology through genome-panel analysis which allows clinicians to match a patient to a therapy that has a higher probability of working for them. Startups in Cohort 3 have also been developing solutions that aim to reduce the cognitive burden on physicians.

“At GE Healthcare, we want to nurture the startup ecosystem and help create healthcare solutions by leveraging the Edison platform and decades of GE Healthcare expertise,” says Raghavan. Edison enables deployment of HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) compliant healthcare solutions which can aggregate, correlate, analyse, process, display and share data from connected medical devices, sensors and health information systems. From a business perspective, this will reduce infrastructure and development spend for startups, since it provides pre-built services and opens global collaboration opportunities.

“Startups can herald the dawn of digital healthcare in India, providing affordable solutions with a reach beyond tier-I & II cities,” says Raghavan. The Edison platform currently powers more than 50 applications that span clinical service lines. These solutions are deployed through cloud, data centres, or on premises across the healthcare spectrum. “We are also developing a Digital Health Platform to help providers accelerate their digital transformation. This platform is aimed at enabling hospitals and healthcare systems to effectively deploy clinical, analytics and AI tools which would support the improvement of care delivery,” he says.

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