The wave of new technologies driving the transformation of health care continues to grow, encompassing devices, apps, data analytics, sensors, wearables and advanced diagnostic tools. Equally as transformative is the focus on applying those solutions across a continuum of care, from hospital to home.
The City of Markham in the Greater Toronto Area has a uniquely connected health innovation ecosystem that includes an acute care hospital, in-home care organizations, community agencies, a regional innovation centre, and start-ups, scale- ups and multinational organizations.This ecosystem works together to assess new solutions, collaborate on adoption, and remove barriers to the transformation of the health care system.With the shared goals of providing integrated, consumer- enabled, best-in-class care, the partnerships in Markham are creating an environment highly attractive for industry innovators to quickly pilot, evaluate and deploy new solutions.
In the last seven years, the health innovation cluster has doubled in Markham, with more than 270 start- up and scale-up companies working directly with health care organizations in the region. ventureLAB, the area’s regional innovation centre, has a strong focus on health innovation thanks to the region’s strong technology and health industry presence. The critical mass of these companies and the strong collaboration amongst health care stakeholders resulted in more than $15 million of direct investments in 2017 through public grants and equity investments.
This success can be attributed to the programs, tools, and resources in Markham’s collaborative ecosystem that allow health innovators to build transformative solutions
to health care challenges, and build, grow, and scale their businesses faster.
“The collaborative ecosystem and robust partnerships facilitated by Markham’s health innovation cluster have contributed to the growth and reach of our business,” said Courtney Cole, Founder and CEO, ForaHealthyMe Inc. “Since becoming a member of this cluster, we have built vital partnerships for research and innovation, hired more engineering talent, launched new products, doubled our customer based, and increased our revenues.”
Markham’s health innovation cluster will continue to expand, through the development of strategic partnerships with global technology and health care industry leaders. Through these partnerships, companies and partner organizations will leverage the tools, expertise and resources to build health care solutions that will better manage our health system, and empower patients, caregivers and community supports to elevate the level of insights needed to deliver better care, closer to home.