LifeBridge Health and CareFirst are hosting an 'innovation challenge' for digital health startups - Technical.ly Baltimore

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Mar. 14, 2019 8:18 am

LifeBridge Health and CareFirst are hosting an ‘innovation challenge’ for digital health startups

Up to $50,000 will be awarded at the June 5 event hosted by the Baltimore hospital network and health insurance provider.
Computer-aided drug discovery is a growing field.

Computer-aided drug discovery is a growing field.

(Photo courtesy of Sinai Hospital BioIncubator)

A pair of Baltimore healthcare leaders are partnering to reach digital health startups.

Hospital network LifeBridge Health and health insurance provider CareFirst BlueCross Blue Shield will be hosting an innovation challenge that includes a chance to pitch and win funding for companies.

The competition culminates with an event on June 5 at CareFirst headquarters in Canton, where companies will pitch for up to $50,000 in funding. It’s open to individuals and groups with new ideas to change healthcare and working with a digital component.

The application deadline is April 15. A group of semifinalists will then be chosen for an initial pitch round in May, followed by the finals.

The host organizations each have their own internal teams focused on bringing in new approaches and using technology. With the challenge, LifeBridge’s Innovation Team and CareFirst’s Healthworx team are partnering to support external entrepreneurs and provide connections to professionals who can help move a new idea forward.

“CareFirst is expanding the dialogue around innovation within our own organization, and we are interested to learn more about the ideas others have for transforming the healthcare industry,” CareFirst President and CEO Brian D. Pieninck said in a statement. “Thinking of better, smarter ways to deliver care to our members and the community will go a long way toward improving the health of those we serve.”

We’ve seen other signs of support for entrepreneurs from these orgs, such as the bioincubator that opened in 2016 at LifeBridge-run Sinai Hospital in North Baltimore.

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Along with funding, winner(s) of the innovation challenge get membership in the network’s startup affiliate program and access to its clinical network.

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