BRATISLAVA, 25th January 2022 – Nine unique projects have been selected for the second year of the HealthCare Lab acceleration program focused on supporting innovative digital health ventures in CEE and South Europe. Selected projects will be finetuning their business ventures over the next three months with the help of international mentors, business coaches, and investors.

Improving healthcare through innovation
Digitization, artificial intelligence, and telemedicine have significantly transformed the healthcare sector in recent years. This is also confirmed by the HealthCare Lab program, which aims to support the development of innovative solutions in healthcare with a focus on startups. The program is supported by global biotechnology and pharmaceutical leader Roche, in collaboration with EIT Health, the Europe’s largest network of health innovators, and is run by Civitta, top advisory company focused on innovations and startup support.

The HealthCare Lab accelerator, which was originally created for startups from Slovakia and the Czech Republic, has expanded its scope to other European countries. „The great interest of innovative startups from 16 European countries in the HealthCare Lab program shows that there is a large number of innovators in the region with the ambition to change healthcare for the better. All selected startups share the project’s vision to increase the availability and quality of patient care through digital innovation,” said Peter Kolesár from Civitta.

Healthier Europe
In addition to Slovak and Czech startups, initiatives from countries such as Turkey, Slovenia, Romania, Bulgaria and Latvia have also applied for the second year of the acceleration program. The organizers and the startups themselves have one clear goal, which is to contribute to a healthier Europe and to improve the patient’s quality of life. „We were truly excited to see such an increased interest for the second edition of HealthCare Lab. More than 200 healthcare startups with great potential decided to join Roche in our efforts of bringing global innovations to our local markets faster. We believe through establishing strong innovative partnerships we can create an encouraging environment that has the potential to shape healthcare and improve patient outcomes. We are looking forward to supporting the acceleration of the 9 startups with disruptive solutions covering the biggest healthcare challenges,” said Daren Wilson, General Manager at Roche Slovakia.

Patients in the first place
After the first successful year of HealthCare Lab, which was initiated by Roche Slovakia, the acceleration program underwent several updates. One of them is a clear definition of key areas that focus on improving the quality of healthcare and patient life. The first challenge is the area of ​​healthcare data management. It aims to bring digital solutions for efficient data collection. The second segment of HealthCare Lab’s interest is the search for digital solutions for screening and early diagnostics. Another area for which the organizers have selected three innovative startups is digital therapeutics and disease management. The aim is to further develop solutions that will enable more effective treatment of chronic diseases.

The basis of change is cooperation
The organizers of the HealthCare Lab closed a selection round, during which they selected 9 innovative startups from more than two hundred applications. Three startups from each focus area will have a unique chance to improve their ideas during the three-month program thanks to an international community of more than 30 mentors, coaches, investors, and researchers. The international community was created thanks to a unique partnership between Roche and EIT Health.

„Building an ecosystem, which would be competitive worldwide, requires solid cooperation among the players. As every great initiative, it has stages and an improvement curve, and based on the experience from the previous years, we can consider that one of the biggest learnings was to realize that one or just a few ecosystem players can not influence the progress significantly, but creating solution from ideas and leading them to the global market can be done only via a wide scale cooperation. As a result of the finding, more and more co-operations are established between the academy and corporate players, investors and public institutes. In EIT Health, we continuously strive to provide professional ground and support for these co-operations and accelerate the improvement of the European innovation scheme. Healthcare Lab is a great example for creating a comprehensive opportunity for healthcare startups, based on the strengths of the leading pharmaceutical company, Roche and Europe’s strongest healthcare innovation network, EIT Health,” – Tamás Békási EIT Health RIS Business Creation Manager.

The acceleration program, which will include workshops, mentoring and networking with potential investors, will culminate in April 2022, a public Demo Day event that will bring together winners in each of the key areas.

For more information about the HealthCare Lab program, visit

Which nine startups are undergoing an acceleration program?

Oncochain (Romania)
Oncochain builds a research platform that enables collaborative collection of real-world data and provision of value-based care in oncology.

Upmedic (Poland)
Upmedic offers an intelligent creator of structured medical documentation, satisfying the ever growing demand for medical diagnostics by helping doctors work smarter and more efficiently.

Kelvin Health (Bulgaria)
Kevin Health is a non-invasive screening, monitoring and early diagnostics tool for socially significant diseases that starts with helping save limbs and lives of PAD & CLI patients via mobile thermography AI.

ELM Genomic (Turkey)
ELM Genomics is a healthcare analytics startup developing genomics products for early screening and diagnosis of rare diseases to prevent irreversible damage while providing DNA-based lifestyle traits and recommendations with lifetime value.

Vagustim Bioelectronics (Turkey)
Vagustim is a digital therapeutic for patients suffering from digestive diseases using ML-driven non-invasive auricular vagus nerve stimulation technology.

BrachyDOSE (Lithuania)
BrachyDOSE is a game changing solution made to prevent up to 100% of radiotherapy treatment errors for most common cancer cases.

Calmsie (Poland)
Calmsie develops Digital Therapeutics for mental health solutions.

Synovius (Romania)
Synovius is a portable device intended to promote and assist in the recovery of joints, his therapeutic objectives, are attained using the mobile orthoses through a docking system that we designed. This appliance boasts an ambitious and innovative design that pushes mobile orthoses towards the cutting edge of technology.

PONS (Turkey/US)
The anywhere ultrasound, PONS, is an AI integrated mobile ultrasound technology that can be used by consumers or pharmacies and provide medical imaging and risk assessment of the patient to the doctor remotely.

About Roche
Roche is a pioneer in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics, focused on advances in science and improving people’s lives. The combined power of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics under one roof has made Roche a leader in personalized healthcare – possessing a strategy to find the right and appropriate treatment for every single patient.
Roche is the largest biotechnology company in the world, offering truly differentiated drugs in the fields of oncology, immunology, infectious diseases, ophthalmology and central nervous system diseases. Roche is also a world leader in in-vitro diagnostics and tissue diagnostics of cancer, as well as a pioneer in diabetes management.

Roche was founded in 1896 and since then has continued to look for ways to best prevent, diagnose and treat diseases and benefit society. The company’s goal is to improve patients’ access to healthcare innovation with the help of all relevant parties. More than thirty drugs developed by Roche are included in the World Health Organization’s list of essential drugs, including life-saving antibiotics, antimalarials and oncology drugs. In addition, Roche has received recognition eleven times in a row from the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI) as one of the most sustainable companies in the pharmaceutical industry.

The Roche Group, headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, is active in more than 100 countries with a staff of approx. 98,000 people worldwide in 2019. In 2019, Roche invested CHF 11.7 billion in research and development and reported sales of CHF 61.5 billion. Genentech in the USA is owned completely by Roche. Roche is also the majority owner of Chugai Pharmaceutical shares in Japan. For more information, visit

About EIT Health
EIT Health is one of the biggest European public-private partnerships in the field of healthcare innovation. Comprised of approximately 150 Partners, EIT Health is a unique European network of top companies, universities, research and development centres, as well as hospitals and institutes. EIT Health’s role is to build an ecosystem that enables the development of healthcare for the future so that European citizens can live longer and healthier lives. EIT Health upgrades the skills of healthcare professionals throughout Europe, investing in Europe’s best talents, and facilitates the commercialisation of innovative health products/solutions within the EU. It is supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union. For more information visit:

CIVITTA is an innovation advisory firm with a mission to be a catalyst for the new economy. CIVITTA helps startups grow and scale; universities to commercialize R&D; corporations to build and accelerate innovation inside the company, and governments to build innovation communities and ecosystems. CIVITTA runs leading startup acceleration programs in CEE such as Ajujaht, Challenger or HealthCare Lab. Headquartered in Estonia and with a team of 350 innovators working across 18 countries, the company has a track record of bringing change across sectors with a holistic and hands-on approach to innovation projects. CIVITTA covers the entire innovation cycle from funding to scaling. For more information, visit