Inova Investment Fund Find Personalized Medicine Innovators

December 19
5:17 AM 2016

The most giant nonprofit hospital network serving Northern Virginia, Inova Health System, is creating a new start-up incubator and investment program focusing on "personalized" medicine innovations.

Executives had say they plan to invest at least $100 million over the next three to five years making $2 million to $5 million bets on promising young companies with products that have gained some traction in the marketplace.

The program is to be part of Inova's new Center for Personalized Health taking shape on the former ExxonMobil campus in Fairfax County. Todd Stottlemyer, chief executive for the center, said the incubator would look to accelerate and commercialize technologies already being pioneered at Inova and elsewhere.

Inova executives cited the example of a company called Truven, which monitors live-streaming data to provide warnings about adverse events within hospitals. Truven's services showed enough promise that the company was recently acquired by IBM.

Inova, with more than 10,000 doctors and nurses supporting about 400,000 emergency room visits a year, could serve as an immediate market for these start-ups' technology.

The hospital system has embarked on an ambitious effort to pursue personalized medicine, recruiting top doctors and researchers from across the country to transform care. Personalized medicine, in which patients receive treatment tailored to their genetic makeup, lifestyle and medical history, is considered a critical opportunity both to fight cancer and advance the commonwealth's economy.

A novel partnership with insurance giant Aetna is designed to better align the incentives of those who provide health care and those who pay for it. Following a nationwide trend toward home-based care, the system actually served more home care visits last year than inpatient admissions.

Inova also recently announced it had formed a comprehensive partnership with the University of Virginia, one that could one day lead to a regional medical school campus.

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