Bioscience Leadership Council Gives Updates on Emory Innovation Hub and Global Health ATL
Photo: Metro Atlanta Chamber Director of Bioscience and Healthcare Ecosystem Expansion Rob Demont welcomes the Bioscience Leadership Council.
Metro Atlanta is a powerful centerpiece in the rapidly growing bioscience industry. The Metro Atlanta Chamber’s Bioscience Leadership Council unites figures from around the region’s ecosystem, most recently for a discussion on the new Emory Innovation Hub and the work of Global Health ATL.
The council kicked off with an overview of the Emory Healthcare Innovation Hub, powered by Sharecare. Sharecare Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications Jen Martin Hall spoke to council members about founder Jeff Arnold’s vision for technology-based solutions to healthcare.
“[Jeff] wanted to harness digital media and the internet to give the power to monitor medical records back in the hands of consumers,” Hall said. “The smartphone is one of the greatest healing devices of our times.”
In partnership with Innovation Hub Enterprises, the Emory Innovation Hub will establish an ecosystem that uses design thinking and end-user research to identify the needs of customers. The hub will then serve as an incubator and accelerator of solutions, impacting healthcare around the region. Innovation Hub Enterprises Co-founder and CEO and Emory Innovation Hub CEO James Lewis spoke on the process of developing the partnership.
“As we grew, we continued talks with Emory on what they saw as the future of healthcare,” Lewis said. “Our insight was that consumers were not at the center of care.”
The Bioscience Leadership Council is chaired by Morehouse School of Medicine President and Dean Valerie Montgomery Rice with Co-chair Greg Vaughn of Spencer Stuart. This was the first council meeting of new Chamber lead Rob Demont, director of bioscience and healthcare ecosystem expansion.
“When you think about health in our region – we have 15 Fortune 500s. We have the CDC, the Carter Center, Care International, Medshare, as well as our research institutions. We’ve got a unique cluster of options,” Demont said. “You look at other markets, and they simply don’t have the breadth and depth of assets. [Metro Atlanta is] the global health capital.”
Metro Atlanta’s reputation at the intersection of global health is reinforced by the presence of Global Health ATL – a collaborative initiative designed to drive Atlanta’s reputation in the sector. The initiative’s priorities are to create a health innovation hub in the heart of metro Atlanta and drive impact in areas such as disease eradication, economic development and disaster response. Georgia Research Alliance President and CEO Russell Allen provided an update to the council.
“We are already connected to the global health community – but not as tightly as we could be,” Allen said. “We have these assets, and we’re at the point where they just need to be connected. Now we are trying to develop a hub, a district, where can all gather and lead innovation and growth for the sector.”
Allen outlined the many “nodes” that currently serve as gathering points for the ecosystem – areas of Atlanta based around key organizations, such as the CDC, CARE, American Cancer Society, the Task Force for Global Health and local research institutes. Global Health ATL seeks to create a “gathering space” serving as a hub for startups, universities, non-governmental organizations and corporations to gather together to foster innovation.
Georgia Bio President and CEO and Georgia Global Health Alliance Executive Director Maria Thacker explained some of the district’s vision to council members.
“We’re looking to make sure we choose a site that can grow and add new members,” Thacker said.
Thacker also provided an update on the work of the Global Health ATL Tiger Teams – including the groups based around Disaster Response and Disease Elimination & Economic Development. The teams will be meeting in the coming months to continue developing their action plans – stay up to date at www.globalhealthatl.com.
Demont provided an economic development update to council members before adjourning the meeting. In 2018, there have so far been 70 landed companies, 34 of which have been expansion projects and 36 new companies to metro Atlanta. Around 34 percent of those companies are foreign-owned.
For more information on the Bioscience Leadership Council, please reach out to Rob Demont.