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India-Sweden Healthcare Innovation Centre launches the second edition of ‘Innovation Challenge’

  • Along with COVID management, this year’s Innovation Challenge will focus on awareness and treatment of cardiovascular, renal, neuro, cancer and lung diseases


India-Sweden Healthcare Innovation Centre, a collaboration between the Swedish Trade Commissioner’s Office, AIIMS Delhi and AIIMS Jodhpur, virtually launched its second edition of the healthcare innovation challenge today. The innovation challenge is an opportunity for startups to collaborate with partners on the Innovation Centre platform to help solve some of the problems in the healthcare delivery landscape of India. This year’s healthcare innovation challenge focuses on solutions within COVID management and solutions for awareness and treatment of cardiovascular, renal, neuro, cancer and lung diseases.

All the applications will undergo a rigorous evaluation process by a panel of experts and include partners like AIIMS Delhi, AIIMS Jodhpur, ICMR, AstraZeneca, NASSCOM, CCamp, AIM, Invest India and various funding entities.

Dr. Randeep Guleria, Director, AIIMS Delhi said, “Frugal innovation to develop cost-effective and efficient ways of healthcare delivery is the key need for Indian healthcare market. Innovators developing these solutions could leverage this platform and avail mentorship and guidance from our institute as well as the partners of the center to develop solutions that would benefit our country.”

Dr. Sanjeev Misra, Director, AIIMS Jodhpur said, “Healthcare systems in India are undergoing a rapid transformation post the pandemic. Early screening and awareness tools, wearable tracking devices, remote monitoring solutions and digital tools are critical in creating a more strong and sustainable healthcare system in India. Innovators in these areas can avail the incubation facility, expert mentorship and validate the solutions at our campus through India-Sweden Healthcare innovation centre to further enhance their products and scale-up of solutions”.

Cecilia Oskarsson, Swedish Trade Commissioner to India said, “Covid has emphasized the need to have robust healthcare infrastructure across the countries and this could be achieved only through innovation.  Therefore, the challenge would focus on innovative Digital Tools/Platforms – Med-Tech, Artificial Intelligence backed solutions that support new ways of working and improve the efficiencies of healthcare systems.”

The selected startups will collaborate with the India-Sweden Healthcare Innovation Centre to enable faster scale-up, cross-country mentorship, access to state-of-the-art incubation centre located within AIIMS Jodhpur and NASSCOM Bangalore campus, lab facilities, guidance on funding, and the ability to ideate with like-minded innovators from across India and beyond.

Gagandeep Singh Bedi, Managing Director, AstraZeneca Pharma India Limited, said, “It is our pleasure to partner with India-Sweden Healthcare Innovation Centre to support the ecosystem. We hope that this platform will really help innovators, who are working hard to impact patients’ lives, to further develop their products/ solutions to provide affordable and accessible healthcare to people in these difficult times.”

The first edition of the healthcare innovation challenge had seen an overwhelming response of 450+ applications from innovators and startups last year. Post a rigorous evaluation process by a panel of doctors, venture capitalists and industry leaders, 14 compelling solutions submitted by innovators are selected for centre. The announcement of these winners was made in the presence of the health minister and key government and private stakeholders. These 14 startups are currently being mentored and are validating their products at the partner hospitals of innovation centre.

The Innovation Centre is built under strategic guidance from the Government of India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the Government of Sweden’s Ministry of Health and Social Affairs and the Embassy of Sweden in India. It also has a strong network of ecosystem partners – Atal Innovation Mission, Invest India, Startup India, CCamp, Bangalore Bio-innovation Centre, Vision Zero Cancer and knowledge partners – AstraZeneca and NASSCOM.