By Ted Obi & Gabriella Selva

Jun 11, 2021

Social and structural determinants of health (SDoH) continue to impact the lives of our most vulnerable populations. At the Diversity Innovation Hub, we believe there is a need for more innovation in the SDoH space in order to mitigate health disparities in outcomes and care. That’s why we created the DIH Incubator Program, which provided structured, individualized mentorship to eight teams with innovative projects addressing SDoH. Our incubator program culminated in a Demo Day where teams pitched their ideas to venture capitalists, folks passionate about SDoH innovation, family, and friends for additional prize money. Check out the winners for this year and learn more about the problems our teams are solving below:

Venture Capital’s Choice Award Winner

Vanguard Medicine // Founder: Christina Blackburn

Vanguard Medicine Inc. provides a targeted patient care solution, Mindful Care Training, that bridges the gap in medical and nursing training on IPV + family violence. Through the use of this clinical decision support and learning management system we support clinicians on the frontline in real time. We found that physicians and nurses are not provided any training on gender-based intimate partner and family violence during their formal schooling. We fill this gap by providing three pillars of frontline support; 1. build new knowledge, 2. curated relevant resources at their fingertips, and 3. live on-demand peer support. Nothing like this currently exists. We meet the need on-the-ground for clinicians and survivors through a precision care model that increases provider knowledge, reduces ED treatment times, and reduces repeat visits. We are survivors and frontline clinicians, creating solutions for survivors and clinicians. This unique vantage point affords us rich inside knowledge and a deep understanding from both sides that inspires us to continually improve upon our precision care model to ensure we are positively influencing patient/provider engagement and success.

SDoH focus: Intimate Partner Violence

People’s Choice Award Winner

Draw Your Way Through Medicine // Founder: Rebecca Kellner

Draw Your Way Through Medicine, is an online digital drawing course for pre medical students, medical students and clinicians. By learning Procreate, an online drawing tool, this course aims to demystify drawing and break down drawing into the fundamentals. The course will allow anyone to digitally draw and communicate complex medical concepts in a simple way! Digital drawing is not bound by many of the limitations of traditional art. Digital drawing tends to be more efficient, forgiving and experimental. In contrast to traditional drawings where mistakes are embraced or covered up, in digital drawing, mistakes are easy to remove with a simple undo button. Most importantly, through tracing, digital drawing allows you to create anatomically correct and proportioned drawings without any prior artist ability. This helps combat the common sentiment among physicians who like to draw for their patients but do have the skill set to do so. Additionally, digital art allows for easy distribution and alterations. This allows physicians to send the drawing home with their patient or upload it to their digital medical record. Like any program or online platform, with the right instruction and practice, everyone will be able to digitally draw and enhance their visual communication skills!

SDoH focus: Health Literacy

People’s Choice Award Winner

Scopic Health // Founders: Jay Sanghvi, Katie Link, and Doug Fair

Scopic is creating a social determinants of health (SDoH) driven ML tool to make surgery socially responsible. Our platform seamlessly integrates into the EMR system and provides valuable insights about a patient’s SDOH status using machine learning. To improve workflow efficiency and increase reimbursement, our tool automates the preliminary SDoH assessment and bills insurance companies for SDoH problems, potentially reforming hospital payments for surgical patients while reducing clinician workload. Through the utilization of our SDoH data, we hope to gain deep population level insights to better understand the unique social needs of our patients all while improving workflow and increasing reimbursement for our users.

SDoH focus: High impact SDoH domains that affect surgical outcomes

People’s Choice Award Winner

GABA // Founder: Candice Blacknall

Before it was the scalable SaaS business it is today, GABA was a 1:1 coaching service for pre-med students at risk of failing or underperforming on exams with an 86% success rate led by our CEO and MD-MBA student, Candice Blacknall. After market validation, GABA is now a career development platform and online community that matches students aspiring to 24 healthcare careers to study tools, tutors, mentors, and coaches based on their learning preferences and desired career. It retains its membership through virtual events and ongoing educational content created by members of the community. In just four months after the launch of its prototype, GABA established partnerships with Morehouse School of Medicine and GaTech, acquired over 400 users on our platform, and boasted over 30% month over month growth. It launched its market-ready product in January 2021 and currently generates $316 MRR. They are currently raising a $1,000,000 seed.

SDoH focus: Education

People’s Choice Award Winner

HUED // Founder: Kimberly Wilson

HUED is a healthcare engagement solution tailored to address the needs of Black and Latino communities by providing access to culturally-competent healthcare providers, while simultaneously working to increase the number of culturally-competent healthcare providers through education and training. By reducing barriers that these communities face due to fear, distrust, comfortability and lack of access to quality medical care, HUED seeks to change the lives of 50,000 Black and Latino patients by 2025.

SDoH focus: Implicit Bias

People’s Choice Award Winner

Breaking Through // Founder: Hannibal Person

Breaking Through was founded to provide novel educational interventions adapted from behavioral science to facilitate the anti-racist transformation of individuals and teams within healthcare. The Breaking Through educational portfolio is growing to address not only anti-racism outside of healthcare, but other issues of inequity and lack of inclusivity. Already enacted for multiple clinical teams with positive feedback, Breaking Through aims to build an online platform to allow more individuals and teams to start their journey towards equity.

SDoH focus: Racial Bias

People’s Choice Award Winner

Medsearch // Founder: Victor Ekuta

The U.S. is currently experiencing a healthcare cost crisis due to a lack of transparency. According to a 2019 Gallup Poll of 3,537 random adults, 47% of Americans never know what a visit to the emergency room will cost before receiving care and another 41% of Americans reported forgoing a visit to the emergency room due to cost over the past 12 months. This cost crisis is especially challenging for minority populations, which have higher rates of delaying or going without medical care due to costs. Our team is trying to solve the issue of price transparency in the United States by creating a searchable database that patients can use to find and compare the costs of medical procedures across many different hospitals, which will allow patients to access quality healthcare at the lowest costs.

SDoH focus: Health Care Access and Quality

People’s Choice Award Winner

HealthStory // Founder: Njeri Mathu

HealthStory is a Personal Health Records platform enabling individuals living with chronic illness to visualize, effectively communicate, and advocate for the story of their health and healthcare journey. Designed as an expressive and intimate digital canvas, we’re solving the challenge of communicating chronic health issues and complex medical histories accurately, comprehensively, and concisely. Born from traumatic experiences navigating the U.S. healthcare system as a Black immigrant female with multiple, debilitating, invisible chronic symptoms, HealthStory is built for and by the chronically unheard, marginalized, and disregarded. Our mission is to manifest health empowerment and equity by democratizing access to the resources needed to advocate for one’s health, and the right to receive dignified, quality healthcare.

SDoH focus: Health Literacy