In light of the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Inaugural 2020 YHC Pitch Slam has been cancelled. 

We would like to extend our deepest thanks to all of the teams who submitted proposals for the Inaugural Yale Healthcare Conference Health Innovation Pitch Competition. Unfortunately, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting transition of the 16th Annual Yale Healthcare Conference to an abbreviated virtual format, the Organizing Committee has made a difficult decision to cancel this year’s YHC Health Innovation Pitch Competition.


We have received a number of novel proposals addressing affordability challenges; the incredible work being done in this arena is awe inspiring.  We would like to thank all the teams for the time and effort put into their submissions, and wish them the very best as they continue their pursuits!


Below we would like to recognize the top three submissions received, listed in alphabetical order. 

Business Meeting

Health Innovation

Pitch slam



Joseph J. Bango, Jr., Makayla Maroney, Patrick J. Conway, Ruba Deeb, and Sophia Agonstinelli


Cloud Prophecy proposes a new concept for a network of specialized continuous ambient air sampling systems, which employ a novel non-destructive ionization and separation method, coupled to a near real-time genomic sequencer. The network of preferably viral samplers would constitute a plurality of distributed nodes throughout the world, with viral concentration, identification, and mutation data uploaded to the cloud for epidemic/pandemic predictive modeling.


The proposed model offers the ability to migrate from outbreak surveillance, to outbreak forecast. In addition, the capability for continuous pathogen data of predominately viral genomic sequencing offers an enhanced capability to help track antigenic drift and antigenic shift. While optimized for viral capture and analysis, any airborne pathogen or spore can be accepted using the technology. An effective monitoring system necessitates a predictive modeling system that is dynamic, which responds and adapts to similar epidemiological infection trends. Applications include world health monitoring, pandemic prediction, and detection of real-time bioterror pathogen deployment.


Nitya Kanuri, Agnieszka Matyja-Sanetra, Salina Hum


The U.S. is facing a student mental health crisis, compromising health and education. Over the last 3 years, colleges have seen anxiety and depression symptoms increase by nearly 50%, and suicide attempts have nearly tripled. We’ve also seen service use increase, with roughly 1 in 3 students seeking counseling. Increased symptomatology causes worse overall health outcome, as well as higher dropout rates and lower academic scores. College counseling centers are overwhelmed. Students face long wait times and inconsistencies in care, with minorities further underserved due to increased stigma and reduced help-seeking. Additionally, less than 20% of students who die by suicide have seen the college counselor.


Maintaining the status quo of only triaging high-risk students who proactively ask for help is not an option. Navi Health’s digital triage tools route students to effective care quickly, giving students agency and choice in their journey to mental wellness. Based on student input in our digital mental wellness assessment, students are recommended a particular intervention, e.g., 1:1 counseling, group-based therapy, or self-help resources. On-going monitoring and communication through digital assessments enable us to track outcomes and ‘step up’ students to other interventions as necessary or desired.





Yaron Seidman


Right to Health leverages big data machine learning of complementary care models, generating protocols followed by clinical research to test which protocols yield most cost savings to the healthcare system.


The goal is to develop, research and implement Affordable Care Protocols (ACPs) utilizing low cost complimentary care modalities such as acupuncture, diet, massage, exercise, herbals and clinical and psychological effectiveness algorithms on a large scale that will result in a unique database of best ACP cost savings for specific ailments, derived from complex analysis of lowest cost care versus highest treatment efficacy and when implemented throughout the healthcare system will reduce the overall healthcare cost for governments and insurers, increase reimbursement rates for providers, decrease the out of pocket cost for patients and increase availability of medicine to the masses.



The Healthcare [R]evolution: Is Affordability Achievable?

Yale Healthcare Conference, together with Yale New Haven Health Services Center for Health Care Innovation and Elm Street Ventures, invites early-stage entrepreneurs to share ideas and technologies that will revolutionize the healthcare landscape, focusing on affordability. Qualifying solutions include, but are not limited to, the following: out of pocket costs, price transparency, and population health.  Selected teams will be invited to present their proposals at the 2020 Yale Healthcare Conference, in front of a panel of judges and the Conference audience on Thursday, April 16th. The first place, second place and Audience Choice award winners will receive cash prizes.


YHC Health Innovation Pitch Competition Timeline

  • Application Opens - February 24th, 2020

  • Application Deadline - March 22nd, 2020

  • Teams Notified - March 27, 2020

  • Live pitches at YHC 2020 on April 16th, 2020



Health Innovation Pitch Competition invites early-stage ventures (pre-series A) working on breakthrough ideas in the space of affordability to submit their proposals. All entrepreneurs, including but not limited to clinicians, staff, students, researchers and faculty, are welcome to participate. If the team progresses to the final round and is invited to present at the Conference, we invite up to three participants per team to present. All presenters will be granted free one-day entrance tickets to the 2020 Yale Healthcare Conference on Thursday, April 16th.

Competition Rules

All communication with participants, case materials, and presentations will and must be provided in English. All teams must prepare and present on the case provided. A panel of judges will select the finalists. Judging panels will be composed of academic and business leaders who are respected for their experience in the healthcare industry.




Case teams are required to submit all presentations as PowerPoint files. Other presentation software is not permitted.  Additional or substitute documents can be submitted as word documents or PDF files. 


All teams must submit their submissions through the Qualtrics form on the Yale Healthcare Conference website by 11:59pm EST Sunday, March 22, 2020. By submitting your documents, you give consent for the YHC Health Innovation Pitch Competition committee to provide your presentation and all applicable details to the sponsor organization for their internal use.


All submissions must contain of the following:

Contact information and resumes for all team members

An executive summary (1 slide summarizing the idea and presenting the team)

Pitch presentation (for a 5 min pitch) in PowerPoint form, may include an appendix OR a ~1-page business plan that clearly states the Problem Statement, Solution Relevance & Affordability Impact, Market Analysis, Market Strategy and Feasibility




Applications will be reviewed by an independent Committee. The Committee will select 5 teams, who will be invited to present their ventures at the 2020 Yale Healthcare Conference. Final decisions will be communicated to applicants by March 27th. The team pool and presentation order will be randomly drawn and communicated to participating teams on Thursday, April 16th.



Team presentations will be up to 5 minutes long with 4 minutes for questions from the judges. Teams will be provided with a one-minute warning by a timekeeper during the presentation. Teams will be penalized for going past 5 minutes in length for presentations.


Teams may check in to the presentation room 30 minutes before the beginning of the Pitch Competition. Any team that arrives late for the preparatory period will not be granted additional time. Start times will be honored for both the preparatory period and for the presentation in the interest of fairness. The Pitch Competition organizing committee will not be held responsible for technical problems that arise either during the preparatory period or during the presentation itself.


Following all of the presentations, the judges will make their final decisions. Winners will be announced during the networking reception on Thursday, April 16th.


Final presentations at Yale Healthcare Conference will be judged by a panel of industry professionals from the corporations listed below:

  • AlleyCorp

  • Connecticut Innovations

  • Elm Street Ventures

  • Ride Health​

  • Yale New Haven Health Services Center for Innovation

  • Yale School of Medicine and Yale School of Management



Scores will be calculated using a standardized assessment based on the following categories:

  • Problem Statement: Submissions are expected to have a high-quality, specific, and well-articulated problem statement, with clearly identified key stakeholders.

  • Solution Relevance & Affordability Impact: Proposals should demonstrate a clear value and impact on affordability, as well as a broader societal impact and public health gain.

  • Market Analysis: Proposals are expected to demonstrate a high-level understanding of appropriate market dynamics and applicable competitive landscapes.

  • Market Strategy: Proposals are expected to utilize a well-defined business model and a clear go-to-market strategy.

  • Feasibility: Proposals should demonstrate a clear understanding of any potential barriers to success, such as regulations and capital requirements.  Proposals should make a compelling case as to why the presenting team is the appropriate group to achieve success.


In total, five teams will advance to the final round and will be invited to present at 2020 Yale Healthcare Conference.


The judging panel for the final round will determine the winners of the competition (first and second place) and the results will be announced at the networking reception following the event on Thursday, April 16th.


Please email if you have any questions on competition rules and guidelines



Q: What types of startups can pitch?

A: Startups that are pre series A can apply. We define that as startups with no funding, only government funding and/or with $1M or less of private capital.


Q: Who is eligible?

A: All entrepreneurs, including but not limited to clinicians, staff, students, researchers and faculty, are welcome to participate.


Q: How big can my startup be?

A: Any size can apply, but we ask for a maximum of 3 presenters.


Q: What support will be given?

A: Teams selected to present will be given an opportunity to review their deck and presentation with Yale New Haven Health and Healthcare Conference stakeholders for feedback in early April.


Q: What is max PowerPoint length?

A: 6 Total slides for presentations, including the title slide. Appendix slides are allowed.