Insights for entrepreneurs from MedCity CONVERGE

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Christina Hernandez Sherwood, eMed Editor, MedCity News

MedCity CONVERGE, a national summit on healthcare innovation, kicked off Tuesday in Philadelphia with insights from pharma, insurance, health systems, and more. Here’s a roundup for life science and digital health entrepreneurs from the conference’s first day:

  • Chris Seper, Founder and CEO, MedCity Media: Healthcare needs a chorus. The chorus will drive solutions for patients.
  • Adrian Rawcliffe, Senior Vice President, Finance North America Pharmaceuticals, GlaxoSmithKline: Gone are the monolithic days of industrialized R&D... We’re seeing more collaboration, partnerships, and rigor. Pharmaceutical companies don't have a monopoly on ideas. They’re judged not just on what is done internally, but on how they source internationally.
  • Mark Blatt, Worldwide Medical Director, Enterprise Solution Sales, Intel: The physician’s job is going to change. No longer will physicians see patients face-to-face in a one-on-one setting. Instead, they’ll do what’s more convenient for patients.
  • Dan Hilferty, President and CEO, Independence Blue Cross: Just as the Obama presidential campaigns used technologically-advanced ground campaigns to pinpoint likely voters and other targets, the insurer is applying that model to healthcare reform. Independence Blue Cross pinpointed by neighborhood young people who wouldn’t have gotten health insurance coverage. On the doors of pregnant patients, caseworkers put bibs with a phone number to call for prenatal care.
  • Nicholas LaRusso, Medical Director, Mayo Clinic Center for Connected Care: We’re moving toward a virtual model of care. No one wants to go to the ER – and many of the medical problems presented there could have been dealt with from a distance.
  • Amy Baxter, CEO, Buzzy: Baxter’s product combines high-frequency vibration with an ice pack to ease pain from shots. But the biggest barrier to changing her idea into inventory was a lack of language – and Baxter herself caused the biggest pitfall. She was so focused on the idea of using the product to prevent pain from shots that she failed to realize it could also aid in itching, burning, and other medical discomforts.
  • 24 startups are represented at the Pfizer Startup Showcase, including Cognific, DocASAP, and Preventice.

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