Do Hospitals Care About Healthcare IT Accelerator Companies?

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about all the various Healthcare IT accelerators out there. There’s a lot of interest in investment in healthcare right now. Just today I posted about a new online healthcare investment portal called VentureHealth. Add in the Rock Health, Startup Health, NYeC Accelerator, Blueprint Health, and Healthbox (I’m sure I’m missing a few others) and we’re seeing a really tremendous interest in trying to create innovative solutions for healthcare.

Despite all this movement and investment, I’m afraid to ask, “Do hospitals care about Healthcare IT accelerator companies?”

In all the conversations I’ve had with hospital executives, I can’t remember once hearing them say that they can’t wait to see what innovations come out of a healthcare accelerator. Sure, some of the accelerators are more focused on consumer health, but there seems like a major disconnect between healthcare accelerators and actual hospitals and doctors.

I noted the one exception to this seemed to be the NYeC accelerator which seems to have good connections to a number of NY based hospitals. Now that their first class is complete, I’ll be interested to talk to those companies that participated to see how well those connections really played out.

To be honest, I’m not sure why there’s the disconnect. Are hospital CIO’s just overwhelmed with all the daily minutiae and government regulations that they don’t have time to look at innovations? Are the healthcare accelerator companies not producing something worthy of hospital CIO interest?

Regardless of why, I see a wide chasm between the innovations that are being worked on in healthcare accelerators and the actual healthcare decision makers.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of, a network of leading Healthcare IT resources. The flagship blog, Healthcare IT Today, contains over 13,000 articles with over half of the articles written by John. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 20 million times.

John manages Healthcare IT Central, the leading career Health IT job board. He also organizes the first of its kind conference and community focused on healthcare marketing, Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference, and a healthcare IT conference,, focused on practical healthcare IT innovation. John is an advisor to multiple healthcare IT companies. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can be found on Twitter: @techguy.


  • Thanks for your interesting observation. The output I’ve seen from accelerator companies tend to be aimed at empowering consumers, as you’ve said–and therefore stripping power from the institutions that want to move them consumers through the assembly lines–or to empower doctors, which can also be threatening. I do with more entrepreneurs would take on the task of improving communications within institutions–the really big job of health IT. But even doing that favor for hospitals would run up against their sunk investments in bad systems and the unavailability of public data to drive new communications apps.

  • Hospitals are very conservative organizations. They only want to do business with established companies. Healthcare startup accelerators are anything but established.

    As Andrew suggested, they are mostly consumer focused too.

  • Most of the projects I’ve worked with are from startups. I’ve been involved with many early adoption projects involving technologies such as: HL7 CCOW, Computer Aided Detection, BI and analytics, patient portals, physician portals, etc.

    Most of these projects have been with the largest healthcare organizations in the USA.

    Many university hospitals are also involved with a lot of small IT companies with very specialized projects.

    Sometimes it’s not the CIO involved with these projects but another champion like a CMIO.

    A CIO is reponsible for the bottom-line and he/she can’t risk making decisions with small companies but this does not mean that they impede these smaller companies from providing some type of solution.



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