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In Philly’s latest digital health accelerator cohort, women-led companies dominate

The third cohort of the University City Science Center Digital Health Acceleratorrecently got underway in Philadelphia, according to a news release. Of the seven companies selected to take part spanning caregiver support as an employee benefit to global guidance on regulatory and reimbursement issues for biopharma and medtech companies, most are led by women. Participants in the 12-month program receive $50,000 without having to give up equity.

So far, 13 companies in the first two cohorts have created 160 jobs and generate more than $21 million in revenue.

Here’s a summary of the startups:

CareCierge is a graduate of the Dreamit Health accelerator. It favors an employee benefit model and provides family caregivers with a personalized roadmap for care coordination and an adviser to consult with. The idea is to cut down on lost productivity and reduce employers’ healthcare cost burden. Elanna Brennen is cofounder and CEO of the business.

ImmERge Labs uses virtual and augmented reality to reimagine how the world prepares for emergency situations, according to a description from DHA. Founded by a former University of Pennsylvania researcher Marion Leary, ImmERge Labs took first place in Penn’s AppItUp competition earlier this year. The company fits into a broader trend of enlisting virtual reality to improve cardiac care. Leary and her team see VR as a way to better train people to perform CPR with applications that combine a physical manikin with realistic, multi-sensory simulations. These tools are not only designed to train people on the mechanics of CPR but also to emotionally and mentally prepare them for these life and death interventions.

LIA Diagnostics developed what it claims to be the first-ever, flushable and biodegradable pregnancy test. Led by Bethany Edwards, cofounder and CEO, LIA steers clear of batteries and plastics in its device. Also a grad of the Dreamit Health’s program, Lia said in the news release it plans to use the program to support its development of a digital application for purchases of the pregnancy test, boost its brand profile and support health education.

PainQx developed a way to measure pain in humans by assessing neural activity from a patient’s brain and processing and decoding the data through its proprietary algorithms, according to the news release. Companies use PainQx’s device as a clinical assessment tool in cases when pain is used as an endpoint to measure the efficacy of a drug or device. Frank Minella is the founder and CEO.

RegDesk developed a network of global experts to provide regulatory and reimbursement guidance to medtech and biopharma companies. Through them, RegDesk clients can also gain market access insights to reduce their risks and costs when deciding which markets to pursue. Priya Bhutani is the founder and CEO of the business.

repisodic provides a search tool for people looking for post-acute care, be it from a nursing home, skilled nursing facility, or a home health agency. The search tool can also determine whether the facility accepts the patient’s insurance. The goal is to avoid gaps in care when patients are discharged from the hospital and to ensure they are adequately matched according to their needs.

Semacare is an Australian company aimed at earlier diagnosis for serious heart conditions. Its approach involves spotting patterns in data from a portable clinical-grade ECG and pulse oximeter for early heart failure and stroke prevention diagnosis. It also monitors Q-T prolongation, an indicator of a heart condition that causes sudden death, according to the news release.

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Kristen Fitch

Senior Director, Marketing