Optum launches Startup Studio program in India in partnership with IIIT, Hyderabad

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Delhi/ Hyderabad (28.04.22) – Optum Global Solutions (India) Private Limited, part of Optum and UnitedHealth Group (a Fortune 5 company), announced the launch of Optum Startup Studio in India, in partnership with International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIITH). The program was launched by Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary of the Industries and Commerce (I&C), and Information Technology (IT) Departments of the Telangana government, virtually and Phil Mckoy, Chief Information Officer, Optum.

Optum Startup Studio aims to identify innovative ideas and startups that can help accelerate value delivery by seeking solutions to  some of healthcare’s hardest problems. The India launch is an expansion of the program in the US and Ireland geographies and seeks to amplify the impact of the vibrant health tech startup and innovation ecosystem in India.

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The program at a glance

The Optum Startup Studio program comprises of two key levers:

  • A startup accelerator that aims to unleash the full potential of India’s promising health tech startups, mentoring them to rapid maturity as measured against international standards across respective products and services portfolios.
  • Support for fast-track pilots with relatively mature startups that already have market-ready solutions.

Optum has partnered with IIITH as its innovation partner in this endeavor. Besides the Optum Startup Studio program, this partnership will also entail research onspecific challenges in the healthcare sector with a focus on applying learnings and distinct capabilities to provide people an opportunity to live healthier lives.

Ideas submitted by participating teams will be independently evaluated by industry and functional experts from Optum and IIITH for further discussion and potential funding. Optum executives will also be available to mentor across all spheres, including technology, business strategy, design, and product development. Concurrently, IIITH will leverage its deep tech research capabilities and vast experience incubating startups to provide research and business mentorship to selected startups.

Phil Mckoy, Chief Information Officer, Optum said – “At Optum we are developing the technology of the future to help modernize, streamline, and simplify the health system. We will get there by collaborating and connecting people and information through the technology of the future. The evolving startup ecosystem in India presents a great opportunity for collaboration to develop numerous innovations in health technology sector. We are planning to support this through our Optum Startup Studio program.”

“Innovation is one of the core values for us at Optum, that has helped us design ideas and solutions to help improve health care access and affordability, enhance the health care experience for providers and patients, and achieve better health outcomes for everyone. The Optum Startup Studio program, which we are now launching in India, shares a commitment with IIITH’s focuses on engaging innovative start-ups with ideas and technologies that could have a meaningful impact on healthcare”, said Ritesh Talapatra, Managing Director, Optum Global Solutions (India) Private Limited.

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“As a top research university in India, we are excited to be collaborating with Optum as both organizations share a commitment to further building and supporting India’s health tech ecosystem”, said P.J. Narayanan, Director, IIITH.

Manoj Kapoor, VP, Technology, Optum Global Solutions (India) Private Limited, added, “We are excited to launch this healthcare innovation program in partnership with IIITH and its excellent programs and technology focus to address some of the most complex health tech issues. Our partnership will not only help us drive innovation with the IIITH community but also allow Optum employees to give back by providing startups with invaluable mentorship, access to cutting-edge technologies and our vast networks and resources to accelerate their maturity and to further support India’s growing health-tech industry.”

The partnership with IIITH follows Optum being honored as part of a consortium that won an American Statistical Association Statistical Partnerships Among Academe, Industry, and Government Award in 2021 for developing a model that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to forecast infectious disease spread.

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