Make us your home page
Instagram

At Healthbox Tampa, a mission to support 7 startups taking on silos of medical industry

Who in their right mind would purchase expensive, personal services with minimal information about the provider and little if any idea of the price?

Well, we do that all the time as consumers (or patients) of the health care system.

Efforts to streamline health care and empower consumer decisions with better information are under way. But the task often feels like chipping away at an iceberg with a toothpick.

Time to unleash the entrepreneurs.

Enter Healthbox Tampa.

The newly arrived business accelerator focuses exclusively on nurturing promising health care startups. From 91 applicants across the state, seven promising startups were recently handpicked to join Healthbox. They are participating in a four-month program from space inside the Tampa Bay WaVE business incubator in downtown Tampa until graduation day in late November.

The seven startups will be introduced formally Tuesday at the Mahaffey Theater in downtown St. Petersburg, a salute in part to the regional interest in health care reform.

Like most other startups these days, these seven combine technology advances with their personal health care expertise to find more efficient ways to provide better treatment.

Among the seven are TAOConnect from Gainesville, which says it can make the task of counseling troubled university students more efficient and more successful.

From Tampa, Save On Medical aspires to become the "hotels.com" shopping site for medical procedures.

And from the Fort Myers area, Head Rehab hopes to ride the nation's growing concern over sports concussions with a fresh and mobile way to assess head trauma.

Unlike most other general business accelerators, Healthbox Tampa has strong financial backing from some industry giants, including Florida Blue (part of the BlueCross BlueShield health insurance empire), that are pressing for innovations in a calcified industry.

"This type of investment aligns with Florida Blue's commitment to health care innovation," says Dave Pizzo, West Florida market president for Florida Blue, which has been working with Healthbox since early 2013. "We see this program as an opportunity to bring together currently siloed health care hubs across the state to create one common ecosystem, and this project ties directly to our vision of being a leading innovator enabling healthy communities."

Typically in exchange for a 7 percent equity stake in each startup, Healthbox provides entrepreneurs with $50,000 of seed capital, office space, a 16-week training program, access to health care experts and the ability to beta test their products.

At one of the seven startups, whose software captures patient data via graphic icons, MediVu CEO Robert Baldwin says it's tough for a young business to reach senior decisionmakers at big hospital chains. Becoming part of the startups backed by Healthbox — an accelerator brand already making its mark in other major cities — has noticeably improved his access, he explains.

What makes Healthbox stand out is its partnerships with key health care providers and payers across the country, says George Gordon, a prominent leader in Tampa Bay's startup scene who chairs Healthbox Tampa.

"This combined with the Healthbox roster of over 350 industry experts can assist the companies in creating relationships with key customers and partners. These relationships are essential to establishing credibility for the companies and accelerating their growth," he says.

Founded by CEO Nina Nashif, Healthbox has grown quickly since launching its first accelerator in Chicago in 2012, expanding to Boston, London, Nashville, Salt Lake City and Florida, where it first landed last year in Jacksonville. Now it's Tampa's turn, where the Florida High Tech Corridor Council, USF, Lake Nona Institute and St. Vincent's Healthcare serve as community sponsors (but not equity investors) for the accelerator.

Combined, the Healthbox accelerators have backed 63 startups, with 61 still in business and growing. Of those, 83 percent are reportedly generating revenue or have successfully raised funding six months after graduation from the program.

That's an impressive track record for startups in an industry notoriously resistant to innovation.

Contact Robert Trigaux at rtrigaux@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8405. Follow @venturetampabay.

At Healthbox

Seven Florida startups out to streamline a slice of health care

BookThatDocHealth HeroHead RehabMedivu Inc.peerFitSave on MedicalTAOConnect
Free Web-based service helps consumers book doctor appointments online.Employee wellness solution offers customized, interactive plans that incorporate family and friends.Medical device and analytical tool for assessing brain performance before and after head trauma.Intuitive clinical software tool displays patient data as icons on workstations or tablets, increasing retention to understand images faster than text.Mobile app helps increase consumer access to fitness classes from various gyms and studios by providing flexible, contract-free membership.Website lets patients shop and pay for affordable health care procedures in their desired location.Platform of tools provides online treatment of common mental health problems among college and university students.
People: Matt Bohannon, president and founder; Alex Guastella, CEOPeople: Anthony Diaz, CEO and founderPeople: Vera Anderson, CEO and founder; Craig Anderson, COO and founderPeople: Robert Baldwin, CEO; Glenn Palmierie, vice president, business developmentPeople: Ed Buckley, president and founder; Scott Peeples, vice president and founderPeople: Matt Schneider, founder and president; Chris Christenberry, founder.People: Sherry Benton, president and founder; Stephanie George, CEO
Based: OrlandoBased: TampaBased: Punta GordaBased: Sarasota/MelbourneBased: GainesvilleBased: TampaBased: Gainesville.
Website: www.bookthatdoc.comWebsite: www.gohealthhero.comWebsite: www.HeadRehab.comWebsite: www.medivu.comWebsite: www.peerfit.com Website: www.saveonmedical.comWebsite: www.TAOConnect.org
Status: Good idea but there is competition, so it's all in the execution. Spreading out from Orlando with 15 employees now and expects 40 workers next year. Doctors, charged a monthly fee, will be attracted to it by its online efficiency and increased chance to attract new patients. Customer base so far includes 250 physicians and two hospital systems in Florida. Status: Enthusiastic founder's title on business card? Chief Happy Officer. Pushing into a competitive business persuading companies to pick among employee wellness programs that historically generate weak participation. Diaz stresses programs and apps that make it easy, fun and social, and can include a worker's entire family at no extra cost. Health Hero charges employers $2-$3 per family per month. Startup says it has positive cash flow and paying, engaged customers, including a network of seven hospitals in California.Status: Started seven years ago working with military war trauma. Now expanding to sports concussion market. Duo say doctors, researchers and athletic trainers lack an objective, scientifically valid technology to quickly assess brain performance after a concussion. Virtual reality device gauges individual's memory, balance and reactions on a 1-10 scale as baseline at start of a sports season to compare after any potential head injury. Software sold using "per test" or "per month" pricing models directly to athletic programs.Status: Pitches its graphic icons as a more interactive way for health care professionals to monitor patients over time. Hospitals spending billions of dollars on new electronic medical record systems, but doctors and nurses still complain they are not user-friendly and often lack comprehensive patient data. Startup's early version tested in a Brevard County hospital. Software can be priced on the number of licensed hospital beds.Status: Three years ago, four University of Florida students came together with a concept to make group fitness easy and fun. Startup's "SweatPass" membership offers access and guidance to various fitness classes with free gym trials, so far in four major U.S. cities (including Orlando) with Atlanta on the way. In turn, gyms gain new member leads and cross-gym partnerships. A pilot test was launched of its multi-gym pass in Houston and a pilot test of the lead generation model is scheduled for Tampa.Status: "We are the hotels.com for medical procedures," Christenberry says. With patients price-sensitive to health care costs due to high-deductible plans, online marketplaces can help patients shop for procedures based upon price, quality and location. Providers pay a subscription fee to be listed on the Save on Medical site. The subscription model is based on how many appointments medical providers schedule each month. It sounds like the Holy Grail of medical consumer shopping — if the startup can find enough worthy providers to make public their prices and provide competitive choices. Startup says it includes procedures from about 25 percent of country's radiology facilities and soon will launch data on outpatient surgical clinics.Status: It's another University of Florida-related startup, this one founded and run by two women well versed in student counseling and startup management. Startup says its online mental health services can allow a counseling center to treat three times the number of students per counselor hour, at less than half the per-student cost and with better outcomes than face-to-face traditional therapy. Counseling centers pay an annual subscription fee based on the total enrollment at the college or university. Twelve colleges and universities, mostly Tampa Bay area and Florida schools, will beta test service this fall for a discounted price. Ten universities say they will purchase TAOConnect when available this January.

Source: Healthbox, individual startups.

At Healthbox

7 Florida startups out to streamline a slice of health care

















































































































BookThatDoc



Health Hero



Head Rehab



Medivu Inc.



peerFit



Save on Medical



TAOConnect



Free web-based service helps consumers book doctor appointments online.



Employee wellness solution offers customized, interactive plans that incorporate family and friends.



Medical device and analytical tool for assessing brain performance before and after head trauma.



Intuitive clinical software tool displays patient data as icons on workstations or tablets, increasing retention to understand images faster than text.



Mobile app helps increase consumer access to fitness classes from various gyms and studios by providing flexible, contract-free membership



Website lets patients shop and pay for affordable health care procedures in their desired location



Platform of tools provides online treatment of common mental health problems among college and university students



People: Matt Bohannon, president and founder; Alex Guastella, CEO



People: Anthony Diaz, CEO and founder



People: Vera Anderson, CEO and founder; Craig Anderson, COO and founder



People: Robert Baldwin, CEO; Glenn Palmierie, vice president, business development



People: Ed Buckley, president and founder; Scott Peeples, vice president and founder



People: Matt Schneider, founder and president; Chris Christenberry, founder.



People: Sherry Benton, president and founder; Stephanie George, CEO



Based: Orlando



Based: Tampa



Based: Punta Gorda, Fla.



Based: Sarasota/Melbourne, Fla.



Based: Gainesville, Fla



Based: Tampa



Based: Gainesville, Fla.



Website: www.bookthatdoc.com



Website: www.gohealthhero.com



Website: www.HeadRehab.com



Website: www.medivu.com



Website: www.peerfit.com



Website: www.saveonmedical.com



Website: www.TAOConnect.org



Status: Good idea but there is competition, so it's all in the execution. Spreading out from Orlando with 15 employees now and expects 40 workers next year. Doctors, charged a monthly fee, will be attracted to it by its online efficiency and increased chance to attract new patients. Customer base so far includes 250 physicians and two hospital systems in Florida.



Status: Enthusiastic founder's title on business card? Chief Happy Officer. Pushing into a competitive business convincing companies to pick among employee wellness programs that historically generate weak participation. Diaz stresses programs and apps that make it easy, fun, social and can include a worker's entire family at no extra cost. Health Hero charges employers $2-$3 per family per month. Startup says it has positive cash flow and paying, engaged customers, including a network of seven hospitals in California.



Status: Started seven years ago working with military war trauma. Now expanding to sports concussion market. Duo says doctors, researchers and athletic trainers lack an objective, scientifically valid technology to quickly assess brain performance post concussion. Virtual reality device gauges individual's memory, balance and reactions on a 1-10 scale as baseline at start of a sports season to compare after any potential head injury. Software sold using "per test" or "per month" pricing models directly to athletic programs.



Status: Pitches its graphic icons as a more interative way for health care professionals to monitor patients over time. Hospitals spending billions of dollars on new electronic medical record systems but doctors and nurses still complain they are not user-friendly and often lack comprehensive patient data. Startup's early version tested in a Brevard County hospital. Software can be priced on the number of licensed hospital beds.



Status: Three years ago, four University of Florida students came together with a concept to make group fitness easy and fun. Startup's "SweatPass" membership offers access and guidance to various fitness classes with free gym trials, so far in four major U.S. cities (including Orlando) with Atlanta on the way. In turn, gyms gain new member leads and cross-gym partnerships. A pilot test was launched of its multi-gym pass in Houston and a pilot test of the lead generation model is scheduled for Tampa.



Status: "We are the hotels.com for medical procedures," says Christenberry. With patients price-sensitive to health care costs due to high deductible plans, online marketplaces can help patients shop for procedures based upon price, quality, and location. Providers pay a subscription fee to be listed on the Save on Medical site. The subscription model is based on how many appointments medical providers schedule each month. It sounds like the Holy Grail of medical consumer shopping – if the startup can find enough worthy providers to make public their prices and provide competitive choices. Startup says it includes procedures from about 25 percent of country's radiology facilities and soon will launch data on outpatient surgical clinics.



Status: It's another University of Florida-related startup, this one founded and run by two women well versed in student counseling and startup management. Startup says its online mental health services can allow a counseling center to treat three times the number of students per counselor hour, at less than half the per student cost and with better outcomes than face-to-face traditional therapy. Counseling centers pay an annual subscription fee based on the total enrollment at the college or university. Twelve colleges and universities, mostly Tampa Bay area and Florida schools, will beta test service this fall for a discounted price. Ten universities say they will purchase TAOConnect when available this January.

Source: Healthbox, individual startups.

At Healthbox Tampa, a mission to support 7 startups taking on silos of medical industry 08/22/14 [Last modified: Friday, August 22, 2014 6:14pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Pinellas licensing board asks Sen. Jack Latvala for $500,000 loan

    Local Government

    The troubled Pinellas County agency that regulates contractors wants Sen. Jack Latvala to help it get a $500,000 lifeline from the state to stay afloat.

    State Sen . Jack Latvala, R- Clearwater, is being asked to help the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board get $500,000 from the state so it can stay open beyond February.  [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
  2. In advertising, marketing diversity needs a boost in Tampa Bay, nationally

    Business

    TAMPA — Trimeka Benjamin was focused on a career in broadcast journalism when she entered Bethune-Cookman University.

    From left, Swim Digital marketing owner Trimeka Benjamin discusses the broad lack of diversity in advertising and marketing with 22 Squared copywriter Luke Sokolewicz, University of Tampa advertising/PR professor Jennifer Whelihan, Rumbo creative director George Zwierko and Nancy Vaughn of the White Book Agency. The group recently met at The Bunker in Ybor City.
  3. Tampa Club president seeks assessment fee from members

    News

    TAMPA — The president of the Tampa Club said he asked members last month to pay an additional assessment fee to provide "additional revenue." However, Ron Licata said Friday that the downtown business group is not in a dire financial situation.

    Ron Licata, president of the Tampa Club in downtown Tampa. [Tampa Club]
  4. Under Republican health care bill, Florida must make up $7.5 billion

    Markets

    If a Senate bill called the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 becomes law, Florida's government would need to make up about $7.5 billion to maintain its current health care system. The bill, which is one of the Republican Party's long-promised answers to the Affordable Care Act imposes a cap on funding per enrollee …

    Florida would need to cover $7.5 billion to keep its health care program under the Republican-proposed Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017.  [Times file photo]
  5. Amid U.S. real estate buying binge by foreign investors, Florida remains first choice

    Real Estate

    Foreign investment in U.S. residential real estate recently skyrocketed to a new high with nearly half of all foreign sales happening in Florida, California and Texas.

    A National Association of Realtors annual survey found record volume and activity by foreign buyers of U.S. real estate. Florida had the highest foreign investment activity, followed by California and Texas. [National Association of Realtors]