Investing in Innovation Creates Financial Opportunities and Improves Patient Care at Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital
The information technology group at Mount Sinai Hospital developed a software solution that increases the amount of time medical staff can spend with patients while creating a potential new revenue source for the hospital. This solution, called VitalHub, gives doctors, nurses and administrators easy, instant and secure access to virtually all hospital databases, including patient records, test results, vital statistics and medical literature—all from their smart phones or tablets.
At a time when hospitals everywhere are trying to improve patient care, reduce costs and generate new revenue sources, the VitalHub solution represents a significant new global marketing opportunity. VitalHub became a spin-off company of Mount Sinai Hospital to commercialize the technology, but it recognized that to succeed it needed to seek out venture capital funding and commercialization expertise.
Government assistance from the Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research Program through MaRS Innovation
MaRS Innovation (MI), which is in part funded by the Government of Canada, is investing $300,000 in VitalHub, enabling the company to move from a pilot trial to a full-scale roll out of products used at Mount Sinai Hospital. "MaRS is an accelerant—it provides the initial fuel to get things moving quickly," said Jim Woodgett, Director of Research, Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute at Mount Sinai Hospital.
The Mount Sinai spinoff has now raised $1 million in financing, which it will use to hire 10 additional staff. The company has preliminary agreements to roll out its solution at three other Canadian hospitals and is in discussion with several U.S. providers.
"This is a great example of how MaRS Innovation works with member research institutes and hospitals to add value to their discoveries and products, construct the deal, and bring together the people who may be interested in the technology," said Dr. Woodgett.
About MaRS Innovation
MI is the commercialization agent for 16 Toronto academic and medical research institutions. The Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research program provides funding and resources to qualify and advance technologies, file patents, develop business and marketing plans and secure investments. It has spun off seven companies to date and brokered four licensing agreements, including an exclusive, worldwide option between Sanofi-Aventis and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre to develop and commercialize a new compound to treat chronic wounds.
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