Devices & Diagnostics

Medical device startups make up nearly half of Healthbox Salt Lake City accelerator companies

There’s a strong medical device bent to Healthbox’s Salt Lake City inaugural accelerator class. It’s not what you typically find in accelerators that tend to want health IT companies because they are usually faster to develop and scale.

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There’s a strong medical device bent to Healthbox’s Salt Lake City inaugural accelerator class. It’s not what you typically find in accelerators that tend to want health IT companies because they are usually faster to develop and scale and don’t have the regulatory hurdles of medical device companies. In addition to the four medical device startups that include a cost-efficient catheter and an endotracheal intubation device, there are six health IT companies. Here’s a look at the class in its third week.

Kosmo Technologies is a dental company that’s working on a device that would allow a dentist to fit patients with an Oral Appliance Therapy to treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea. The condition occurs in about 4 percent of men and 2 percent of women. Kosmo is based in Salt Lake City and was founded by Michael Gleeson and Bill Hanewinkel.

LIYEN sees a world where stylish and asthma inhaler can stand together in the same sentence. It has developed a next-generation spacer device for asthma inhalers to improve drug delivery. Although an estimated 25 million use inhalers, only 10 percent to 20 percent of the medication is effectively delivered into the patient’s lungs. When an inhaler is used in combination with a spacer device, drug deposition increases to 50 percent to 60 percent, according to a description of the company. It’s designed to increase compliance through innovative product design and customization. The company’s name is actually an acronym for the Last Inhaler You’ll Ever Need. Led by CEO and founder Chris Ciancone, the company is based in Salt Lake City.

simplicityAirway developed a mask and adapter device that provide endotracheal intubation without the need to remove the life support instruments, because doing so poses a risk to the patient. The company sells its product directly to hospitals and medical centers via respiratory care product distributors. Dr Branden Rosenhan, a critical care physician with St Mark’s Hospital and medtech innovator, is co-founder and CEO of the business, which is based in Salt Lake City.

XableCath is developing a catheter-based device for crossing obstructed lesions in the arterial system, which can be a difficult task for physicians. Lisa Dunlea and Steve Clark are the co-founders and Dunlea is the CEO. The company would be competing against some pretty big guns like Medtronic, Boston Scientifics, but sees itself as a more cost-efficient alternative. It is based in Salt Lake City.

Asserta Health Co-founders Korb Matosich the president and Lisa Behnke, the Chief Medical Officer want to simplify the billing process by providing consumers with a bank-issued healthcare purchasing card, as a “single point of contact” in a consumer support model. It wants to support the consumer in every healthcare transaction, eliminate bad debt. It has a beta product ready for a pilot and is looking for early adopter customers.

LowestMed’s founder and CEO Brad Bangerter wants to make prescription drug prices more transparent for consumers to improve adherence. It calculates that one in eight people don’t take their prescription meds because they can’t afford them. It is competing against GoodRx and Catamaran. It already has 50,000 users for its app provides prescription drug pricing information to consumers enabling them to shop, compare and save on out-of-pocket costs. LowestMed is based in Sandy, Utah.

ProMD provides essential information to patients managing their treatment through its MobiMD app. Founded by Dr. Ram Nirula CMO and James Bartlett, ProMD is based in Salt Lake City.

Symptomly, founded by Derek Bereit, is a Web-based dashboard and communication portal that helps hospitals and insurance companies manage their chronic disease patients and members. It is going after asthma first with eAsthma Tracker, which the company claims has been proven to reduce child asthmatic hospital readmissions to 2.3 percent. So far, it has intrigued payers and providers. It counts a major children’s hospital among its customers as well as  two insurance companies and 15 pediatric clinics. Its platform is currently being used in a $2.1 million PCORI-grant research study in five Intermountain Healthcare pediatric clinics.

Tute Genomics was founded by Reid Robison, the CEO, and Kai Wang, the president. It has a cloud-based clinical genome
interpretation platform. It takes unstructured data such as medical records and symptoms, puts it into a structured database and uses machine learning to help researchers identify disease genes and biomarkers. It also assists clinicians in performing genetic diagnosis. Tute is based in Provo, Utah.

whatsnewMD partners with physicians groups and health systems to create a standard way to evaluate medical technologies, such as mobile apps, medical devices and biotech, using factors such as clinical effectiveness, costs, reimbursement and efficiency. Mike Mahler and Dr. Rob Nicoletta are the founders of the Boston-based company.