While COVID-19 may have placed international travel on hold for the foreseeable future, this did not stop the 2020 Health 10x program participants from experiencing India. The three-day India innovation immersive, all delivered digitally, included expert speakers, virtual tours to primary healthcare centres, and culminated with a cooking class.
The India Innovation immersive is a market deep dive into India, an emerging market with vast healthcare needs, is designed to provide Health 10x founders with the opportunity to validate their assumptions and offerings. Over the course of the three days, the five early-stage MedTech startups engaged with the Indian health and medical startup ecosystem. Curated by Dr. Oommen John, Senior Research Fellow at TGI, the program schedule included candid talks from Indian MedTech experts such as Vijay Simha, CEO of Audiocor, the Chair of Health Innovation at The Confederation of Indian Industry, and innovative young founders such as Abhay Singhal, founder of telehealth platform, TickTalkTo and Vidhur Mahajan a physician turned entrepreneur leading a health-focused AI startup CARING.
The startups also had the opportunity to interact with representatives of Ayushman Bharat Market Access Programme for Health Innovations at National Health Authority and National Health Technology Assessment Unit at National Health Systems Research Centre.
With a specific focus on social impact, the founder of Miks Chai, Mikhara Ramsing outlined her successful social enterprise business modelling and product changes during COVID-19. Lochie Burke, founder of social enterprise Bouddi Solutions encouraged the Health 10x cohort to select mutually beneficial and genuine partnerships with local organisations when expanding into the Indian market.
While the focus of the immersive three days was on critical aspects of health solutions commercialisation, clinical validation, investment and regulatory environments, the teams were also exposed to the cultural and historical nuances that comprise India’s business culture. Sandeep Kirpalani from the Center for Social Impact outlined the social-political landscape affecting social enterprises in India. They also enjoyed guided virtual tour of Bangalore – a technology and economic hub of India – provided by an expert historian.
Concluding the three-day India immersive, both Health 10x and 10x Accelerator participants replaced their founders’ hats with chefs’ hats for a fun, interactive cooking class. Hosted by Poonam Mama, participants were taken through a culinary expedition of the top cuisines from across India and were taught the secrets to making delicious Butter Paneer Masala and Vegetable Pulao.