The New York City Investment Partners (@NYCIF) and the New York eHealth Collaborative (@NYeHealth) announced the launch of the New York Digital Health Accelerator (NYDHA) for early- and growth-stage digital health companies developing technologies for care coordination, patient engagement, analytics and message alerts for healthcare providers.

The NYDHA is definitely taking a unique approach to the accelerator model, emphasizing its extensive network of providers across the State of New York and the role of the state health information exchange (HIE), the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY).

Questions in the four page survey of applying entrepreneurs (embedded below) show the organization is much more conscious of the intellectual property value proposition than the other digital health accelerators have shown themselves to be.

The initial investment in the NYDHA is $4.2M from a consortium of investors (see below) and will choose 12 companies after an intensive review process, including an in-person interview with the review committee on one of two proposed days.

NYDHA states explicitly that applicants must have a BETA version of their product done to even be considered.

This model creates an interesting dichotomy with the Rock Health style accelerator, which is all about providing access to well known mentors, digerati and the free flowing money of Silicon Valley but little in the way of access to providers, much less patients. It does seem to reflect the Bay Area stereotype that health tech is just another flavor of consumer tech. Build a better mousetrap and they’ll come, or so they say.

It will be interesting to see whether the other digital health accelerators feel the pressure to up the ante and finally get serious about engaging providers proactively and embracing clinical technology in a meaningful way. Of the three, Healthbox has shown itself to be the most comfortable working with startups developing clinical technologies, but they have no real meaningful strategic partnerships with providers.

Companies accepted into the accelerator will receive $100K of initial funding at the outset of the program, then following four months of development startups are eligible for an additional $200K if they meet predefined milestones. Capital will be structured as a note convertible into the next round, with a small warrant coverage.

Below you can read the NYDHA explanation of the type of companies it is seeking for this ambitious and well-designed accelerator as well as the numerous provider and investor partners. Select applicants will be invited to in-person interviews in late-May before the final class of companies is chosen over the summer and the program begins September 10th.

Care Coordination

  • Collaborative care solutions that reflect the continuum of information on a patient and support team based care, management of patient by risk category, secure messaging, and transitions of care.

Analytics

  • Retrospective and predictive analyses related to care coordination, quality management, and decision support. Tools capable of identifying high risk patients and notifying patients of follow-up care appointments, based on standard criteria for risk.
  • Analytic capabilities that take into account both quality and financial measures to adequately identify risk. Statistical tools related to quality improvement and public health reporting.

Message Alerts

  • Alert tools that provide a secure and standardized messaging environment for accurate communication and information exchange between transferring and receiving provider.
  • Clinical decision support including point-of-care alerts indicating transitions in care settings, hospitalizations, medication changes, discharges, non-medical referrals, other medical changes to care plan.

Patient Engagement

  • Personal health management solutions that facilitate better healthcare decisions, and help improve communication on care-management between the provider and the patient and/or family members. Patient engagement tools need to span the possibilities of innovation and present a wide range of options that allow for easy access by patients.
  • Examples of innovations in this focus area include but are not limited to telehealth, caregiver tools, appointment scheduling, tools that facilitate self-management and capture health risk behaviors, preventive care elements, community resources, health and wellness tools, patient understandable lab results, etc.

Participating Providers

Albany Medical Center
Catholic Health System
Community Healthcare Network
Continuum Health Partners
Ellis Medicine
FEGS Health and Human Services System
Finger Lakes Community Health
Hometown Health Centers
Hudson Valley Initiative
Institute for Family Health
Maimonides Medical Center
NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation
New York-Presbyterian Hospital
NorthShore LIJ Health System
Stony Brook University Medical Center
Visiting Nurse Service of Schenectady and Saratoga Counties
Winthrop-University Hospital

Participating Investors

New York City Investment Partners (@NYCIF) was the brainchild of Henry Kravis, founder of Kohlberg, Kravis and Roberts (KKR), and is the lead investor/operator behind the NYDHA. The fund’s mandate is to create jobs in the five burrows area by investing in entrepreneurs and community businesses.

Its co-investors on this ambitious accelerator include Aetna, Milestone Venture Partners, New Leaf Venture Partners, Quaker Partners, Safeguard Scientifics, and United Health Group.