Junto Profile: Awair

Wearable fitness devices were the first health technology products that truly made me consider whether health tech had the ability to make a big splash into the average, consumer goods marketplace. With fitness devices, you did not have to have a particular illness or set of health needs to find use for them, which is rare in the health tech world. While their merits may still be debated, it was still nonetheless remarkable that all the sudden one day everyone was monitoring their steps on their wrists.

Ronald Ro and his team at Awair have developed a consumer-facing healthcare product that, similar to the wearable fitness device, may soon be found in the hands of individuals all across the country.  Awair is a sleek device that monitors the quality of air in a room and then provides recommendations to create a healthier home environment. This device is moving beyond simply monitoring the health of one's body and is instead taking into account the large impact that the environment plays on health outcomes. The premise behind Awair is that you should not only be worrying about air quality once you are suffering from the adverse consequences of pollution, chemicals, or dust. Instead, you should be working to stabilize your environment and prevent these adverse consequences from ever arising. 

Read More
Junto Profile: EpiBone

What if everything you needed to recover from an injury or illness was already residing within your own body? Nina Tandon and her team at EpiBone are trying to make this idea a reality with their mission to harness the body's healing power and develop a new method of skeletal repair. The EpiBone team has figured out how to harness the power of a bioreactor to mimic the conditions found in the human body which enable bone growth. In just three weeks, they are able to build a personalized bone graft out of adult stem cells that is ready for implantation. 

With a PhD in tissue engineering and an Executive MBA in healthcare entrepreneurship from Columbia University, Nina has been making waves in both the academic and commercial world with her revolutionary bone growth process. Fast Company named her as one of the top 100 creative people in business and she also is a TED Senior Fellow. In 2017, Nina was also named as a Finalist in Heritage Healthcare's Annual Innovation Awards. 

Currently, EpiBone is on track to begin their first human clinical trials this year with a plan of going to market in 2023 if all goes well. We caught up with Nina to learn more about what it has been like to grow her company in New York City and how EpiBone has been received within the medical community.

Read More
Emerging Surgical Technology: The Problem & The Solution for Improving Outcomes

A guest post by Dr. Justin Barad, the Founder & CEO of Osso VR: I have been astonished by the pace and number of recent advances in our ability to treat disease and injury.  Many of these advances often come in the form of new technologies.  Amazing innovations in the fields of endoscopy, catheterization, robotics, imaging, navigation, 3D printing and more allow us to do things that were previously not believed to be possible.  What we also did not foresee though are the complications that have come with them.  In general, these new technologies are far more complicated than simpler techniques from the past. But the real challenge is not simply that technology is more complex; it’s that these solutions are being released into a system of medical training that has not changed in over a century, and unfortunately, is beginning to fail us. This problem, or training gap, is only increasing over time, and ironically, technology is also one of the only ways to address it.

Read More
Dr. Justin BaradComment
Rhythms of Health

A guest post by HealthRhythms CEO, Tanzeem Choudhury: Listen carefully.....Can you hear the clock ticking inside each cell in your body? Probably not, but our health actually revolves around the many clocks inside of us and how well they are aligned with one another. In fact, the most recent Nobel Prize for Medicine was awarded to three scientists who studied our circadian roughly 24-hour) rhythms precisely because they understood how central these rhythms are to our health. 

Much of healthcare and, surprisingly even digital approaches to healthcare are ignorant of how critical our body’s clock or clocks are to the optimal timing of medication, surgery, chemotherapy and a host of other interventions. Nor, is there clear recognition of the role of that the  timing  of sleep, meals, activity, rest and a host of other behaviors play in determining the course of the chronic medical conditions that account for the majority of disease burden in the developed world.

At HealthRhythms we are taking a scientifically validated approach to improving the mental and physical wellbeing of all individuals by leveraging the passive sensing capabilities of commercial smartphones to identify behavioral health patterns and to further demonstrate the importance of physiological and behavioral rhythms and their role across disease.

Read More
No, Your Doctor Won't be Replaced by a Robot

A guest post by MDCalc Founder & CEO, Joe Habboushe: AI has been taking over medical tasks for 50+ years – improving, not replacing, doctor’s ability to care. Recently, several large tech companies have tried to sell AI as something new: a mysterious black box that can “sniff out” diagnoses and treatments and eventually replace docs. Beyond their inability to explain how they’re planning to develop such technology - beyond a general hand waving around “big data” - they also seem to ignore that artificial intelligence has been changing medicine for decades. It has not replaced doctors. In fact, we are actually currently experiencing a physician shortage. However, AI has been beneficial on other fronts with its ability to increase the quality and quantity of care we provide.

Read More
Junto Profile: Neopenda

Very few digital health companies decide to develop products for low-income and low-resource settings. Founders Teresa Cauvel and Sona Shah decided to step up to this challenge with the development of their company Neopenda that is focused on designing a wearable device  to monitor infant's vital signs in developing countries. 

Originally starting their product development at Columbia University in 2015, Tesesa and Sona soon joined the Relevant Health Accelerator in Rockville, Maryland and began building a name for themselves, Today, their company has been featured by the likes of Forbes, Deloitte, Global Citizen, and Cisco. We caught up with Teresa to learn more about what led to Neopenda's founding and where the company hopes to be heading by the end of this year.

Read More
3 Health Tech Companies to Watch in 2018

Heading out of 2017 and into the New Year, the health tech battlefield is littered with countless startups who garnered investments but soon fell to the unique pressures felt in the healthcare space. At Junto, we have been able to have a sidelines view of these trials and tribulations as we have guided our larger providers and pharmaceutical members through different phases of digital innovation. 

While plenty of companies have impressed us with their tenacity and drive, a few stood out for their unique vision and solutions to the healthcare ecosystem's struggles on both the clinician and patient side. Here is our roundup of 3 startups that thoroughly impressed us this year and that you should be sure to keep an eye on as we head into 2018, because they are most definitely positioned for even more success.

Read More
Applying Psychology to the Challenge of Internal Health Tech Adoption

Adoption of technology in the healthcare field has been happening at an incredibly slow pace. This is a fact that new would disagree with. The market is saturated with health tech companies that are vying to be the next big unicorn in the field, but long sales cycles and simple underestimations of what is needed for HIPAA and FDA approval has led to the demise of many of these projects. The ones that do receive enough series funding to produce finessed products for health systems and pharmaceutical companies however soon realize that the battle against time is not over.

Simply getting into a health system is not enough. Once a contract is finally ironed out and software is exchanged, the next uphill battle against the slow-pace of internal adoption is mounted. 

Read More
Junto Profile: Athletik Health

Recently, we caught up with serial founder Jean-Luc Neptune who is out to change the sports medicine landscape with his new business Athletik Health. With countless years of experience managing startups and a background in medicine, JL sees the opportunity for a reinvention of the sports medicine landscape. Over the past few years we have all watched the rise of boutique fitness programs like Soul Cycle and a new class of ultra marathons and races. What has been missing however is a similar reinvention of the care provided for everyday individuals who are pushing their bodies to the extreme through these new exercise fads.

Read More