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Rock Health Boosts 11 Health App Startups

The startups, which have promising mobile or web-based health apps, will receive grants, office space, and mentoring from business and health industry professionals.

12 Innovative Mobile Healthcare Apps
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: 12 Innovative Mobile Healthcare Apps

Rock Health has chosen to give a kick start to 11 startup companies with innovative and promising digital, mobile, and web-based health applications.

During Rock Health's inaugural five-month program, each start-up will receive a $20,000 grant, plus office space and mentoring from business and health industry professionals.

The 11 startups were chosen by Rock Health and its partners from more than 350 submissions, said Halle Tecco, founder and managing director of Rock Health, which itself was launched earlier this year in San Francisco to "seed" promising new health care mobile and web-based application developers.

The program will help these budding companies--most which have only two employees, including a software developer--connect with and tap insights from potential users of the new apps, including healthcare professionals, Tecco said in an interview with InformationWeek Healthcare.

There are entrepreneurs "who want to make an impact in healthcare, but need resources, including funding and connections to healthcare systems," said Tecco.

The startups chosen for the program will have access to medical experts, ranging from getting feedback about their applications, to matching up the firms with physicians in specific practice areas that are targeted by the particular applications, said Tecco, whose own background includes work in healthcare and technology, including a stint at Intel and launching wellness organization YogaBear, which providers yoga instructions in cancer patients.

The start-ups selected by Rock Health include:

-- BrainBot, which is working on technology to improve mental performance and stress management.

-- CellScope, which is working on apps that allow smartphone cameras to be used for at-home diagnosis of illnesses, like ear infections.

-- Genomera, which is working on personal health collaboration platform.

-- Health In Reach, which is creating an online marketplace for medical procedures.

-- Omada Health, which is developing social networking for clinical treatment.

-- Pipette, which is working on patient monitoring and education using smart phones and tablets.

-- Skimble, which is developing interactive mobile fitness apps

-- WeSprout, which is working on tools for connecting health data and community.

In addition, Rock Health also chose three other unnamed start-ups that are "in stealth mode"

In addition to the $20,000 grants awarded to each of the start-ups, during the five month program, Rock Health is providing office space and connections to healthcare providers who'll "be in and out visiting Rock Health" and giving feedback to the innovators, said Tecco.

Many of the start-ups will begin on June 20th to launch pilot work with some of Rock Health's healthcare provider partners--including Harvard Medical School, Mayo Clinic, Cincinnati Children's Hospital and a fourth, soon-to-be named healthcare providers in the San Francisco, said Tecco.

For its part, Rock Health investors include Rock Healths investors include Aberdare Ventures, Accel Partners, the California HealthCare Foundation, Microsoft's BizSpark and Health Solutions Group, Mohr Davidow Ventures, NEA, Nike, and Qualcomm.

The Healthcare IT Leadership Forum is a day-long venue where senior IT leaders in healthcare come together to discuss how they're using technology to improve clinical care. It happens in New York City on July 12. Find out more.

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