Mayo Clinic Announces Winners Of Its Think Big Challenge


The Mayo Clinic has announced the winners of its first annual digital health design competition, the Think Big Challenge. The competition launched this July with the goal of spurring app development efforts concentrated on both promoting healthy living and supporting chronic disease management. Mayo Clinic partnered with Avia Entrepreneurs, a provider-led digital health accelerator, to back the challenge with $100,000 in cash prizes. Together, Mayo and Avia funded a $50,000 grand prize for the first place team competing in the health living category, and another $50,000 for the first place team in the chronic disease management category. Winners would also receive one year of hands-on support services to help scale their businesses.

Applications opened in late July, ultimately drawing 130 submissions. Over the next two months the field of competition was narrowed to six finalists. The competition concluded with a finalist pitch-off at Mayo Clinic’s Transform 2015 conference last week.

Within the healthy living concentration, finalists included:

  • San Francisco-based startup Care at Hand, a company building online patient surveys that support care transitions by predicting hospitalizations and potential readmissions.

  • Boulder, CO-based Dātu Health, a company building a patient engagement platform designed to help enterprise healthcare systems send personalized, contextually rich notifications and reminders to patients.

  • Milwaukee-based Seiva Technologies, a company building smartphone-connected compression devices.

Finalists within the cohort focused on supporting chronic disease management included:

  • Mountain View, CA-based Livongo, a company focused on improving diabetes care by moving glucose readings into the cloud where algorithms identify high-risk patients and a virtual care team supports disease management.

  • Chicago-based physIQ, a team deploying remote patient monitoring technologies to power an early-warning platform for heart failure patients.

  • Seattle-based Wellpepper, a patient-engagement platform that allows hospitals to deploy their own treatment plans within an app that guides care delivery when the patient is outside of the hospital, and then collects outcomes data and sends it back to the hospital for analysis.

Founders from each startup were invited to the Transform 2015 conference in Rochester, MN to pitch their concepts to a panel of digital health thought leaders that would judge the potential of each idea and select a winner. At the end of the evening, Care at Hand and Wellpepper were selected as the winning startups.

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