Pulling off an innovation orchestral event

October 5, 2018

Have you ever organised a group of friends or colleagues to plan an event? Organised a wedding, a concert or a present where you have to ‘give something to get something’? There’s so much to do, largely trying to balance priorities, perspectives, commitments, and yes, at times egos and agendas – who gets to be in the photos, what about the divorced couple who we’re all friends with, but who can’t stand each other?!


But the best part is when the planning is finished, when you’ve done all you can on the night before. It’s just before the event kicks off, you have that anticipation, knowing that it will have moments that are special, that will have an impact and lead to connections and memories that last…. ones that we’ll reminisce about in years to come, with affection and humour…. And through the tiredness of the work to make it happen, there’s that feeling of achievement; of having ‘done a good job’, and that the effort will be worth it, and some weird sense of excitement for the opportunity to do it again….



Well, that’s how we felt last week, having been successful in a LaunchVic Health Startup Accelerator grant application with our partners, the Royal Melbourne Hospital. An idea that was conceived by Pat Sepulveda and Chris Kommatas in early 2016, was brought to fruition through the support of Prof Ingrid Winship and Premier & Cabinet to get the Melbourne Health Accelerator (MHx) in 2017, and is now able to grow and mature with the establishment of the Victorian Health Network Accelerator (VHNx) in 2019 and 2020.




VHNx will establish 2 hospital-based startup accelerators – at the Royal Melbourne and Bendigo Hospital – taking on over 20 early stage companies to work through a specialised program to grow, develop and validate their solutions with deep immersion in the health sector.


It also aims to drive cultural change inside health care’s old world of silos and institutions – engaging hospital staff on innovation and connecting them so they can collaborate and share solutions that change perspectives and lead to desperately needed transformation.

We’ve been able to assemble an amazing partnership collaborative to whom we are hugely appreciative of your trust, commitment and contribution.


Our partners include:

This success is down to that collective effort of many people wanting to achieve a goal: Pat and Chris creating the initial vision, Ingrid Winship and Liz Young for establishing the health agency supports and Andrew Niere and Rob Patrick at DPC for more formal Government support. Also the alumni of MHx who stuck with us as we experimented to get this program developed and who continue to go from strength to strength.


But every orchestra needs a conductor (or circus a ringmaster?!) so a very special thank-you goes out to Jenni Dore. Without her patience, commitment to the vision and just simple hard work to get stuff done, this program could easily have withered on the vine.

And so now, we get to actually do it – bring together hospitals, their staff, entrepreneurs, mentors and a whole host of industry partners to see what a collective and collaborative innovation model can do to change health care.


Watch this space!




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