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Biocat's new health entrepreneurship program, Ignite·Health Barcelona, kicked off this September. The 23 chosen participants (from 86 applications submitted) have taken the first steps to become successful entrepreneurs in the healthcare sector.

The program's kick off was held on September 1 and 2 to round off multidisciplinary teams and choose a real need in the fields of cardiology, pneumology and Covid-19 - Critical Patient Units (ICU) in order to develop a business idea and find a viable solution. A group of experts will guide the teams and evaluate their proposed solution and business model through personalized mentoring. 

Training, which is supported by EIT Health, will also be complemented by master classes on entrepreneurship, product development and market access, along with other topics. The course will also include pitch training, as well as the participation of entrepreneurs who will share their experience in setting up and growing their startups (small talks). 

Young and eager to get into entrepreneurship

The group of participants is quite varied in terms of background and origin. There are graduates in Biochemistry, Biomedical Engineering, Bioinformatics, Medicine and Management from different countries, such as Portugal, Italy and the United States. Although more than 30% have a PhD degree or are currently pursuing it, the students are relatively young: more than 40% are under 35 years old.

Even with the variety of profiles, they all hope that the program will enable them to develop their talents in healthcare entrepreneurship. Paolo Nuciforo, an Italian PhD in Medicine, is hoping to learn the necessary tools to help him build a startup, a desire he shares with biomedical engineer Nerea Álvarez, the youngest of the participants who, at the age of 22, knows she wants to be an entrepreneur. 

Others like the Portuguese Ana Amaral, PhD in Biochemistry, is looking forward to learning how to detect a real problem in a hospital to end up finding a viable solution, or Xavier Corominas, PhD student in Physiotherapy, who would like to "learn how markets work at European level".

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