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Ascension Partners with Tech Accelerator for Greater Healthcare Innovation

August 18, 2017
by Rajiv Leventhal
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Ascension, said to be the world's largest Catholic health system, has begun a collaboration with Plug and Play Tech Center, a global innovation, investor and technology accelerator that supports innovative startups across various sectors, including healthcare.

The St. Louis, Mo.-headquartered health system has been looking for innovative solutions and ideas to help the national health system deliver compassionate, personalized care, and this collaboration offers a new way to connect with the best new ideas as they emerge, its officials said in a press release.

Specifically, Plug and Play Tech Center’s Health and Wellness Technology Accelerator aims to connect forward-thinking organizations, corporations and investors with startups in the health and wellness industry around such broad topics as wellness, longevity and digital health. Each year, the accelerator provides two 12-week intensive programs for some 40 health-related companies, culled from thousands of applicants. These young companies then are connected with sponsoring organizations like Ascension for coaching, mentoring and testing ideas.

“This collaboration gives Ascension new opportunities to support our efforts to lead the transformation of healthcare. Plug and Play Tech Center offers us a defined, targeted method of spotting innovation in healthcare and wellness early on to solve problems and meet evolving consumer needs where, when and how they prefer,” said Jim Beckmann, chief operating officer of Ascension Holdings, part of Ascension’s Solutions division, said in a statement. “We know the future of healthcare lies in offering greater value and in empowering consumers, and teaming with Plug and Play gives us another tool in the toolbox to achieve that goal.”

Chris Young, Ascension vice president of innovation, further added that the health system looked at various accelerators before making a decision. “These startups may be two or three people creating a new technology or method in their garage, or they may be further along as a budding business,” he said.

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