WILD CARD: the €4 million initiative of EIT Health to transform European healthcare
Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, through its Innovation & Entrepreneurship Programmes, UPM_innovatech and actúaupm, is one of the 15 Europe’s top organizations selected to participate in this initiative.
The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) is an independent body of the European Union to spur innovation and entrepreneurship in different fields (energy, food, digital, raw materials, health…) organized in Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs). One of them is EIT Health, one of the largest healthcare initiatives worldwide, that is leading the way for new research innovations and developments.
With the idea of translating this research into real-world smart products and service solutions to improve European citizen’s healthcare, EIT Health launches Wild Card, a new initiative to identify and support innovative and high-risk ideas and projects that address healthcare challenges and improve the health outcomes for Europe’s citizens.
Focusing on applied research, entrepreneurial ideas and innovative thinking, and with a funding for entrepreneurs of four million euros, Wild Card is seeking ideas and projects that address one of two challenge areas: Smart Health (AI/big data challenge) and Fight Back (antibiotic resistance challenge).
• SMART HEALTH sets applicants the task of building new solutions that utilise Artificial Intelligence to quickly interpret large, unstructured data sets, allowing healthcare professionals across the EU to improve patient care.
• FIGHT BACK challenges applicants to build innovative solutions that tackle the growing problem of antibiotic resistance, both in terms of raising awareness and enabling new processes and methodologies across EU healthcare.
15 Europe’s top Incubators to make these ideas come true
Once the winning teams have been selected, they will be offered a vast range of services provided by the Wild Card Incubators selected by the program, who will give them facilities and support for a two year period to help the Wild Card winners to transform their ideas into reality.
These Incubators, that include Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Medical Valley EMN (Germany), YES!Delft (Netherlands), Sting (Stockholm), Instituto Pedro Nunes (Portugal), Agoranov (France) or BioExel NUIG (Ireland), between others, will provide the opportunity for Wild Card winners to learn from the best, and have access to insightful and valuable mentoring throughout their project.
In the words of Jorge Fernández, Innovation Director at EIT Health and coordinator of the Wild Card program, “Wild Card is looking for innovative, risk-taking game changers who have radical ideas for the future of healthcare in the EU. We believe these ideas are out there right now. Wild Card wants to bring them into the light and give them the financial, business and research supports necessary to flourish”.
How to participate?
The competition is open to individuals or small teams (with a maximum of three people) from all backgrounds across the European Union. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to compete in a final tournament in mid-2018. The two winning teams will be supported for 24 months, starting in October 2018.
Applications can be submitted via www.wildcard.eithealth.eu from 10 January 2018. The deadline for applications is 17:00 CET, 9 March 2018. More information can be found on the Wild Card FAQ page.