PATH, partners team up to unlock lifesaving health innovation in India

February 1, 2015 by PATH

Unique collaboration joins PATH, Unitus Seed Fund, Pfizer, and partners to increase access to health products and services, support Indian entrepreneurs, and improve health throughout India

PATH is pleased to announce a new collaboration to improve health in low-resource communities in India by supporting the country's health technology entrepreneurs.

The StartHealth program combines the technical expertise, business acumen, and resources of PATH, Unitus Seed Fund, Pfizer Inc., Manipal Hospitals, and Narayana Health to unlock Indian innovation. By coordinating technical support, grant funding, and capital investment, the program's unique model will help health technology startups create and advance affordable and effective health products and services.

The collaboration–the first program of its kind for PATH–provides an exciting opportunity to support early-stage in-country entrepreneurs who focus on both social impact and financial sustainability. By expanding the breadth of our engagement with the private sector, the program builds on PATH's enduring commitment to harnessing public-private partnerships to tackle critical health challenges facing low-resource communities.

A clear track for lifesaving innovation

India's growing community of entrepreneurs have the potential to significantly improve global health. Yet too many great ideas are still held back by lack of funding, insufficiently developed business models, limited evidence of effectiveness, untested markets, inadequate networks to reach scale, and other barriers.

StartHealth combines technical assistance, grants, and investment funding to bridge these gaps. First, the program will provide up to five startups with grant funding to test their products and business models in new markets and ensure their readiness for scale. It will also provide them with technical expertise and networks to enable this market testing.

Next, startups that meet predetermined milestones will qualify for an impact investment through Unitus Seed Fund. This capital will allow them to expand and scale their business and attract additional investments.

In exchange for this support, selected entrepreneurs must meet requirements ensuring that their products reach and serve low-resource communities–supporting the program's goal of improving public health.

By creating this powerful track to success, StartHealth will amplify the value and impact of early grant funding, support the development of health innovation, improve the quality of technologies and businesses models before investments are made, and speed up the development and introduction of lifesaving products and services.

A bold vision: StartHealth and PATH's Global Health Innovation Hub

The StartHealth program is part of PATH's visionary Global Health Innovation Hub (GHIH). Through the GHIH, PATH is engaging and supporting innovators in India and other countries where innovation ecosystems for global health technologies are gaining traction. Our goal is to accelerate the development and introduction of breakthrough health solutions designed for low-resource settings.

"We are excited to bring PATH's nearly 40 years of global health experience to India's vibrant startup community," says GHIH Director Dipika Matthias. "Today, health technology entrepreneurs are emerging as critical players in global health. Innovative programs such as StartHealth will allow our collective grants, investments, and expertise to reach further–and improve a greater number lives–than ever before. The StartHealth program has the potential to deliver exponential gains for donors, impact investors, and vulnerable women, children, and communities in India."

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