HITLAB Announces Finalists for 2021 WHT challenge

December 9, 2021

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HITLAB is pleased to announce the eight finalists selected for the WHT challenge. The WHT Challenge is an initiative founded in 2018 with the mission of addressing unmet health needs of women globally and increasing gender equity in technology and venture.

The finalists, which were selected based on impact, sustainability, innovation, feasibility and quality of work of their solution, include HerhealthEQ, Vitala Global Corporation, Whispa Health, Mammha, Aila Health, Gabbi, Univfy and Oova. There were a competitive pool of applications supporting women in the US and 23 countries across the globe which were reviewed and scored by 20 screening judges, all of whom are deeply involved in women’s health tech.

JUDGING CRITERIA

Impact: Winning entries will demonstrate an ability to effectively address the unmet needs of women on a global scale. The entry should:
  1. Define the target population(s) who will utilize the solution. This may include all women or particular issues in women’s health in a particular patient population in the U.S., caregivers, family members, healthcare professionals, or others.
  2. Explain the unmet need and its significance to the target population and related stakeholders.
  3. Show how the Idea will fulfill or mitigate the unmet need. Concepts can focus on enhancing patient outcomes, lowering healthcare costs without compromising quality, making the management of patients more efficient, and improving their health and quality of life.
Sustainability: Submissions must provide evidence that the solution can be delivered to the marketplace in a sustainable business model. The entry should:
  1. Identify funding or revenue sources.
  2. Demonstrate that the concept can be feasibly scaled from a prototype to broad distribution within the target population.
Innovation: Proposals must delineate how their technology solution differs from current practice or services and technology available in the healthcare or consumer markets. The entry should:
  1. Define the value proposition and what makes the concept different from existing offerings.
  2. Highlight the novelty of the solution, such as the new usage of the technology or unique and creative applications of existing technology or protocols.
Feasibility: Contestants (as individuals or teams up to three people) should demonstrate that the concept is feasible and show that they have the background and skills necessary to execute their business plan. If the team reaches the finals, feasibility will ideally be demonstrated with a track record in the digital technology space. Each individual business plan should:
  1. Describe how the strengths of each entrant would support the process of bringing the concept to the marketplace.
  2. Include background details such as education, professional experience, leadership abilities, and technological capabilities, in addition to other potential attributes.
Quality of Work: Contestants (as individuals or teams up to three people) should represent a cohesive team committed to providing a high standard of work. Contestants should:
  1. Create a submission entry that illustrates a collaborative effort.
  2. Submit a novel idea, technology solution, or business concept in digital technology that represents the entrant’s highest quality of work. Provide a clear and coherent presentation (for the judges and the live audience).
HerhealthEQ – Healthcare Access (Medical Equipment) Non-Profit Finalist
HERhealthEQ is creating health equity in developing communities around the world by providing resources women need to detect, prevent, and treat non-communicable diseases (NCDs) – medical issues that are easily diagnosed and treatable with the right equipment. We ensure a sustainable solution by facilitating the delivery of equipment that may otherwise go to waste. Impact-driven community selection and need analysis uniquely position us to deliver exactly what emerging and developing regions globally need to close the health gap—so women can live long, productive lives for the betterment of their families and the region as a whole.
Vitala Global Corporation – Reproductive Health (Contraceptives/Abortion) Non-Profit Finalist

Vitala Global is a Canadian not-for-profit organization that co-designs quality digital solutions that are community-led and user-centered with womxn/girls living in challenging contexts globally. We address their most stigmatized sexual and reproductive health needs whether that is related to pregnancy loss to family planning and abortion care.

Whispa Health – Reproductive Health (Sexual/Reproductive) Pre-Seed Finalist

Whispa Health uses technology to offer young people (especially women) quality sexual health education, private or anonymous telehealth consultations, affordable contraceptive counselling and services, cervical cancer screening and vaccination, comprehensive STD tests and more. Our goal is to help young people-particularly women, to manage their sexual and reproductive healthcare without shame, judgment, or stigma.

Mammha – Maternal Mental Health (Perinatal Mood Disorders) Pre-Seed Finalist

Perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs) are the most common complication of pregnancy and childbirth. Health care professionals have long acknowledged that all women should be screened for PMADs and other risk factors. Unfortunately, an abysmally low percentage of women is screened and identified in most healthcare contexts. Mammha is an enterprise platform that provides in-office and remote maternal mental health screening and care coordination. Mammha’s technology and people help expedite connections between patients and an extensive internal network of global mental health professionals, treatments, and resources to help match women with appropriate care.

Aila Health – Autoimmune diseases Seed Finalist

Aila Health is a virtual, precision health platform for the 50M Americans living with autoimmune diseases, 75% of whom are women. Their data-driven virtual care platform seamlessly ingests patient data to help integrative care teams deliver personalized, multi-specialty care in a scalable way for value based care organizations. Aila Health is on a mission to generate real world evidence for women living with these complex diseases so that we can better understand how to treat and manage them.

Gabbi – Breast Cancer Seed Finalist

Gabbi is your personal breast specialist. Our proprietary algorithm assesses a woman’s risk of breast cancer, equips her with a personalized action plan, and navigates her to an early detection.

Univfy – Fertility (IVF) Series A Finalist

Univfy is making fertility care more affordable, successful and predictable

  • Leverage AI/ML to personalize patient counseling and offer value-based pricing
  • Help women and couples choose the best fertility path
  • Patients should be able to count on fertility treatments to have a baby
Oova – Fertility (At-Home Hormone Testing) Series A Finalist

Oova is the fertility translator that fully illuminates a woman’s fertility, giving her the clearest steps to conception. Founded by doctors and backed by Mount Sinai Hospital, Oova ensures each data point is valuable to patients and healthcare providers. Oova is the first at-home urine test that measures both luteinizing hormone and progesterone to inform a woman of her most fertile days and confirm that she released an egg this cycle.

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