Y Combinator’s Summer 2017 health care startups to watch

10/17 Replay Gallery More Galleries
SEE SLIDESHOW

Y Combinator’s Summer 2017 health care startups to watch

There were quite a few trends this time around for Y Combinator’s popular Demo Day, including a mountain of B2B startups, AI, self-driving technology and of course an industry that continues to surge — health care.

Come take a gander at some of the most promising health care startups to emerge from the Summer 2017 class of YC companies.

1/17

Helium Healthcare

Paper medical records can cost lives but Helium is making them a thing of the past with its “rugged” electronic medical records system for Africa. Designed for minimal training and offline access from any device, Helium can handle patient records for doctor’s visits, prescriptions, and billing. Helium offers both pay-as-you-go billing and traditional enterprise subscriptions for larger hospitals. With over 20 facilities and 500 medical professionals on board, Helium hopes to improve healthcare across Africa by making EMR easy to adopt.

2/17

Darmiyan

Darmiyan is using fully-automated proprietary software to produce maps that aim to reduce the cost and time it takes to test for early-onset Alzheimer’s disease up to 15 years before symptoms start. The company has tested 3,000 patients so far. Even before submitting itself for FDA approval, the company has signed up a $1 million contract. Currently there are 26 million Americans who should be tested, and each test costs $500, which means a potential $13 billion market for the company.

3/17

ShiftDoc

ShiftDoc is building a better way to fill shifts for private healthcare practices with its jobs marketplace for health care professionals. The startup hopes to undercut staffing agencies with its marketplace approach by offering a better user experience than job boards and a higher take for each shift filled. ShiftDoc says that it’s earning $50 per filled shift . Of course, the hard part is building up initial supply and demand to get to a point where the marketplace will self sustain. So far, the team has on-boarded 150 part-time doctors willing to fill shifts at 50 private practices.

4/17

Sunu

The vision-impaired frequently hurt themselves, with one blind person going to the hospital every 5 seconds due to head injury. But their options are limited to a low-tech $30 cane or a pricey $30,000 guide dog. Sunu is a sonar bracelet that vibrates to let the vision-impaired know that they’re approaching an object. Its six-month beta test saw users reduce accidents by 90 percent.

Sunu has sold $25,000-worth of its bracelets, which will ship in October. Now that the product has been built and patented, it’s seeking to sell one to all 10 million blind people in the US. People are willing to pay a premium for safety, so even if cheaper devices emerge, Sunu could win by becoming a trusted brand.

Advertisement
5/17

Forever Labs

Forever Labs wants to collect, cryogenically freeze and later transplant your stem cells to your older self to combat aging

Stem cells have been shown to help improve the life of mice by 16 percent, but the older you get, the less helpful they get in helping to fight disease. Now, Forever Labs has 20 doctors providing the procedure, but expects to be in every major US market by this time next year. Stem cell banking could be a $56 billion market, the company believes.

6/17

Cambridge Cancer Genomics

It can take six months before a cancer patient’s doctor knows if the chemotherapy regimen they chose is working, yet two-thirds of treatments fail. Cambridge Cancer Genomics has developed a blood test that can detect failed treatments up to many months faster than standard monitoring, so doctors can switch plans sooner when necessary. Founded by 4 PhDs with cancer research experience, CGC is also building AI for personalizing cancer treatment using a data set it says is 4X larger than what’s available to the public, as it absorbs data from each medical facility it signs on.

7/17

Helpwear

HelpWear is building a more versatile ECG system for the 17 million Americans suffering from acute heart conditions. Existing systems are uncomfortable amalgams of wires and adhesives and can only be worn for 72 hours and have to be taken off before hopping in the shower, something that can be a major inconvenience to those suffering from acute heart conditions.

HelpWear’s solution is a much more svelte system of three wearable units akin to fitness trackers which are wireless and can be worn 24/7 and are waterproof. The startup is on track to be FDA-approved in nine months.

8/17

Totemic Labs

Millions of seniors fall every year, and even when seniors own necklaces and other wearables, they regularly forget to wear them. This is both a safety hazard and a failure of product design. Totemic Labs is building a device that resembles an Amazon Echo that uses wireless signals to identify and respond to senior’s falls automatically. The team promises that a single device can monitor an entire home. For its efforts, Totemic earns $300 per year, per device within a $12 billion market.

Advertisement
9/17

Modern Fertility

Modern Fertility is selling home fertility tests for women to provide transparency at a fraction of the cost of traditional fertility clinics. Having launched just a week and a half ago, Modern Fertility has managed $70,000 in pre-orders and it expects each customer to test on a yearly basis. The company is currently selling direct to consumer but also sees potential in selling to businesses. Businesses like AngelList, Plaid and OpenDoor have expressed interest in sponsoring home fertility care for employees.

10/17

Caelum Health

Sometimes physicians prescribe drugs because they work, and other times it’s because they’re easy. Caelum Health wants to use software to improve people’s health without prescribing them drugs. It’s starting with irritable bowel syndrome, which affects 20 percent of Americans and leads to $55 billion worth of prescriptions. Caelum provides behavioral health treatments that it says are 3x more effective than prescription drugs, and has pilots with 7 of the top 10 health systems.

11/17

Enzyme

Think of Enzyme as FDA compliance as a service. Enzyme is building software to help life sciences companies with FDA approval and regulatory compliance. Using Enzyme’s software, those companies can avoid spending money on costly consultants which in turn can reduce their compliance costs by up to 50 percent. Since 10 percent of all personnel in biopharma and life sciences companies are related to regulatory issues, it can lower headcount as well. Perhaps most importantly, Enzyme can also make it easier and faster for those companies to bring their products to market.

12/17

BillionToOne

BillionToOne is trying to be a “safe prenatal genetic test for all mothers.” There are several blood tests out there, but not all of them are accurate. Then there’s the decades-old amniocentesis testing where mothers-to-be must allow a long needle to go into their belly and possibly damage the fetus.

BillionToOne’s test helps check for fetal disorders like sickle cell and beta-thalassemia, without the miscarriage risk that comes through amnio tests. The team claims that the first test they’ve developed is at least 99% accurate.

Note that genetics startup Counsyl offers a similar test often used by more modern medical practices. BillionToOne is launching in the U.S. in 2018 and will expand globally, with a focus on market opportunities in India and China.

Advertisement
13/17

PreDixion Bio

PreDxion Bio believes that it has a blood test that could cut down on deaths in emergency rooms. The team says that previous blood tests often took over three days to get back and that about half a million people die per year because of the delays. They’ve built a test that can help doctors gain insight into inflammatory biomarkers, making it easier to treat things like trauma and burns. The startup is starting clinical trials this fall at UCSF, Mayo Clinic and Mount Sinai hospitals.

14/17

Helix Nanotechnologies

Helix Nanotechnologies uses artificial intelligence to help cure genetic diseases. Errors in DNA causes cancer in cells, but by using cutting edge AI, Helix is trying to unlock the nucleus of cells and deliver new DNA. Already, it’s licensing its technology to four major firms, but looking to develop its own cell therapy. With just a shot in the arm a couple of times a year, Helix believes it could build a platform to cure and prevent all genetic diseases.

Photographer: Valentin Flauraud/Bloomberg via Getty Images

15/17

CureSkin

India is facing a massive shortage of dermatologists. There simply are not enough doctors to address the existing needs of the massive Indian market. However, CureSkin offers a solution using computer vision to recommend treatment to patients who don’t have access to trained professionals. With just a photo, CureSkin says it can diagnose approximately 80 percent of skin conditions and recommend treatment regimens. Seven-thousand patients are using CureSkin each week and half of those users come back for issues later on, according to the startup.

16/17

HealthWiz

HealthWiz is a SaaS platform for lowering employer healthcare costs while also helping employees find better care. Every year, employers waste $4,000 in healthcare costs due to their employees not choosing the right care providers. When providing HealthWiz as a benefit, their employees can find cheaper and faster ways to get a prescription. The company is going after a market that affects 50 million potential employees and it’s already testing with thousands of users.

Advertisement
17/17

Carrot Fertility

Carrot Fertility wants to bring fertility benefits to company health plans so employers can cover fertility procedures like IVF or egg-freezing just like they do for vision or dental. Though big tech companies like Apple, Facebook and Google are already offering fertility benefits to employees, other companies that aren’t so flush with cash may not have the ability to be seeking out the best path towards adding this coverage. Carrot Fertility makes it easier for companies to add the service to health plans, helping them keep their list of benefits attractive to potential new hires.

BACK TO
TOP