LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Larta Institute, a non-profit organization accelerating innovation and entrepreneurship to feed, fuel and heal the world, has opened a call for applicants to join the 2024 cohort of its Heal.LA Bioscience and Healthcare Accelerator. The Heal.LA accelerator welcomes applications from innovators with ideas that have the potential to improve the health and wellness of underserved, urban communities. Participants in the accelerator will receive expert mentorship to nurture their ideas and support in piloting their innovation in communities in Los Angeles County.
The call for applications is open now through February 2024. The nine-month program will begin in April 2024.
“The pandemic underscored what we already knew — that access to quality health care in communities long considered undervalued has not been prioritized,” said Rohit Shukla, founder and chief executive officer of Larta Institute. “Specifically, the pace of innovation in devices, diagnostics, preventive health care and therapeutics has not been well-aligned with the needs of these communities, despite the richness of our innovation system in Los Angeles. Larta has designed our Heal.LA Bioscience and Healthcare Accelerator to help diverse founders advance innovations geared to the needs of underserved communities and to pilot the use of their solutions in these communities. Heal.LA provides practical support through rigorous and purposeful mentoring, access to knowledge and connections in the well-established Heal.LA network, and hands-on assistance with grant and other funding opportunities.”
The Heal.LA Bioscience and Healthcare Accelerator seeks community-focused innovations that collaborate with municipalities and address three impact areas:
- Access to care and financial equity: including, community health research, policy analysis and funding, healthcare workforce training, in-community clinics and affordable healthcare solutions
- Disease screening, prevention and treatment: including, public healthcare education, at-home disease screening, community-based screening, pollution mitigation, reduction or both, and the democratization of treatments
- Holistic wellbeing, including nutritious foods and mental health: such as food and water security, local urban farming, affordable grocery stores, mental health education and a diversity of therapy services
The accelerator seeks innovations across a spectrum of stages. The early-stage track provides invaluable guidance around product development and validation, market entry and regulatory compliance readiness. For more mature innovations, the advanced-stage track is tailored to drive established products or services towards specific targeted outcomes.
There is no cost to participants and no equity is taken. Benefits of the program include:
- Expert mentorship from leaders in the life sciences industry who have built and scaled startups
- Guidance to prepare participants to run a pilot program in Los Angeles communities
- Support from grant writing experts to apply for non-dilutive government SBIR funding
- Participation in exclusive Demo Days to pitch to a curated network of active investors.
"The 1:1 mentorship provided us with valuable guidance on business strategy and helped us to better understand how to prepare an effective business pitch,” said Hando Kim, 2023 Heal.LA bioscience accelerator cohort member and founder and CEO of Innometive. “This mentorship gave us the opportunity to learn from an experienced domain expert and receive personalized feedback on our ideas and approach."
The Heal.LA Bioscience and Healthcare Accelerator is funded in part by the California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA), the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Gilead Sciences.
Heal.LA partners include the Alliance for SoCal Innovation; Biocom California; Biolabs; BioscienceLA; California State University, Los Angeles; Cedars-Sinai Medical Center; City of Hope Medical Center; Consortium for Technology and Innovation in Pediatrics (CTIP); Keck School of Medicine of USC; Keck Graduate Institute; The Lundquist Institute; MedTechColor; Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center; Rio Hondo College; UCLA Technology Development Group; and WuXi Biologics. Heal.LA’s steering committee of experts is drawn from these organizations.
"The California Office of the Small Business Advocate strongly supports Larta Institute's model of entrepreneurship-led innovation. This is a significant ingredient for every Inclusive Innovation Hub that we invest in through our Accelerate California program, including Larta," said Tara Lynn Gray, director of the California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA). "We're excited to interact with the entrepreneurs who raise their hands to contribute to the 2024 Heal program and to witness new ideas in advancing healthcare and wellness solutions in underserved communities of LA and beyond."
In 2022, Heal.LA was designated by the State of California as an Inclusive Innovation Hub (iHub²) to help accelerate diversity in California’s science and tech-based industries. It was also designated a Regional Innovation Cluster by the SBA, one of only two SBA-designated regional innovation clusters in the country focused on the biosciences.
To learn more or apply to the Heal.LA Bioscience and Healthcare Accelerator, please visit: https://larta.org/programs/heal-accelerator/
About Larta Institute
Larta Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization accelerating innovation and entrepreneurship. Our mission is to foster science and technology innovation for a sustainable planet.
Our planet is experiencing significant global problems created by human behavior and policies affecting the environment, food, education, energy and healthcare systems. New science and technology play a critical role in transforming how we sustainably feed, fuel and heal the world.
LARTA was founded in 1993 and funded by the State of California as a Los Angeles Regional Technology Alliance to stimulate the economic development of technology-based enterprises. Now known as Larta Institute, the organization has become a national partner for numerous federal government agencies — including DARPA, NIH, DOE, NSF, NIST, NOAA and USDA — to commercialize novel research and innovation.
Today, Larta Institute’s innovation platform and ecosystem accelerate new science and technology from idea to sustainable enterprise by providing a unique combination of connections, resources and funding.
We have helped over 4,500 startups, and our alumni have raised more than $7 billion in external funding.
Together, let’s feed, fuel and heal the world. To learn more, visit: Larta.org