GE Healthcare has launched its first health accelerator, called five.eight, focused on startups creating technologies that can improve care delivery in developing economies.

Five.eight refers to the 5.8 billion people worldwide who lack access to quality, affordable healthcare.

Through the accelerator, GE aims to fund 10 global health startups with a vision to improve healthcare quality and accessibility in developing or low-resource settings. GE will potentially fund up to $5 million per startup.

Portfolio companies from four social impact investors – Acumen, Aavishkaar-Intellecap Group, Unitus Seed Fund and Villgro – will be among the initial applicants for the first accelerator programme.

“We’ve had a continuous commitment to improving healthcare for those who need it most, but we know we cannot do it alone,” said CEO of GE Healthcare, John Flannery.

“Through five.eight, our goal is to fuel the greater global health ecosystem, partnering with social impact investors and global health startups, in order to maximise impact and outcomes for populations with the greatest need,” continued Flannery.

The first startup to join five.eight is Tricog, a Bangalore-based startup which aims to develop cloud-connected ECG devices to increase survival rates of heart attacks in India by decreasing the average time between symptoms and treatment.

Tricog can help doctors diagnose a patient within minutes of their arrival at a clinic, improving access to quick, accurate and affordable diagnosis, which can lead to significant mortality reduction

The startups joining five.eight will have access to GE’s Innovation Network programming and resources as well as connectivity to other GE global innovation centres in Helsinki, Cardiff, Istanbul, Calgary, Johannesburg, Dubai and more.

The accelerator is also open to partnerships with global health startups directly, or other stakeholders within the global health ecosystem, including academia, NGOs or other healthcare providers.

Interested applicants are encouraged to contact five.eight; applicants will be evaluated and accepted on a rolling basis. The accelerator is open to all global health startups, regardless of location.

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