COVID-19 Navigator Offers Health Systems Rapid Access to Innovative, Actionable Solutions
// By Kyle Hardner //
The COVID-19 pandemic brought health system leaders a myriad of brand-new questions, and precious little time to find solutions. How can we effectively triage COVID-19 patients? How can we predict COVID-19’s impact on our health system going forward? How can we estimate our capacity for elective surgeries and other vital services when the time comes? How can we reduce or eliminate COVID-19 readmissions?
To find answers, hospital executives are increasingly turning to technology. Whether it’s implementing or expanding virtual visits, investing in contact tracing, or developing ways to track ventilators and intensive care unit (ICU) beds, health systems are seeking innovation at breakneck speed.
“During the pandemic, we’ve seen decades of progress in just four weeks,” says Unity Stoakes, co-founder, president, and managing partner of StartUp Health, a global network of healthcare technology entrepreneurs. “There’s an urgent need for technology innovations across the spectrum.”
Stoakes saw the growing demand, and his firm responded quickly. In early March, it launched a call for COVID-19 innovation, asking its network of 325 solutions providers to identify any products that could directly impact COVID-19 care. Then, on March 13, StartUp Health rolled out the COVID-19 Navigator. It’s a database of 172 direct and indirect COVID-19 solutions, 52 of which are in market and ready to help hospitals and health systems right now.
“We wanted to give hospitals’ chief executive officers, their innovation teams, and their emergency department (ED) directors direct access to CEOs from tech companies within 24 hours,” Stoakes says. “These entrepreneurs and innovators can move very quickly. In many cases, they can develop a solution specific to a health system’s needs in real time.”
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