ATLANTA, GA– November 21, 2016— Atlanta-based health incubator, Forge recently announced that it has merged with Sling Health (previously IDEA Labs) — a biomedical design and entrepreneurship incubator with chapters in St. Louis, Boston, Philadelphia, Ann Arbor, and New Orleans. Sling Health collaborates with the American Medical Association and many industry and academic sponsors. Forge is now the Atlanta chapter of Sling Health, and has adopted the latter organization’s branding and vision.
Previously, Forge helped digital health startups launch pilots with clinical partners in Atlanta. Now, the organization has shifted its focus to ideation stage. Sling Health forms teams of medical, engineering, and business students with mentorship from faculty, clinicians, and local entrepreneurs. The goal is to start companies that solve problems in care delivery or clinical medicine.
To help teams do this, Sling Health provides technical, clinical, business, and legal mentorship, initial funding and facilities for prototypes, and legal support. Teams retain 100% of their IP and equity. Since 2014, Sling Health has spent $80,000 to support 133 students. This effort has yielded 16 provisional patents, 12 companies, and $3M in follow-on investment. Sling Health also hosts a national demo day every year for teams from all chapters to present to early-stage investors.
Sling Health’s scope also includes medical devices, expanding Forge’s previous focus from solely digital health. This vertical is well-represented in Atlanta, with St. Jude’s acquisition of CardioMEMS, pre-clinical testing facilities at GCMI, and related research at every engineering department at Georgia Tech (which all rank in the top ten nationally).
A new team of graduate students and young professionals will lead Sling Health in Atlanta. Several Forge team members remain involved, and Forge board members will become Sling Health advisers. Roxanne Glazier, a Ph.D. student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Emory and Georgia Tech, will lead the Atlanta chapter as President.
Joining Sling Health will create opportunities for innovators at Emory and Georgia Tech. Conversely, the outstanding technical, clinical, and entrepreneurial talent in Atlanta will contribute to the broader organization.