GuideWell ScaleUp Accelerator 2020
Submission Deadline12/15/2019


The GuideWell Scale Up Accelerator is an eight-week technology accelerator program focused on “scale up” health technology companies. GuideWell is interested in growing health technology ventures that have the opportunity to solve big problems and reach large markets in the U.S. healthcare industry.

For the Spring 2020 cohort, GuideWell is seeking 5-10 innovative technology companies with novel approaches that enable America’s rapidly growing senior population to “Age in Place”.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the number of Americans over 65 will grow from 35 million in 2000 to over 71 million by 2030. This translates to almost 20% of the US population being over age 65 by 2030. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines Aging in Place as “the ability to live in one’s own home and community safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age, income, or ability level”. 

According to Harvard’s Joint Center, the number of households with at least one senior having a self-care disability will reach 12 million by 2035. Many of these seniors will require daily assistance with personal care if they stay in their homes. In addition, it is projected that 27 million older Americans will need help with other lifestyle tasks such as shopping, housework, or paying bills.

Today most assistance to America’s growing senior population is provided by family members, including spouses. This occurs partly due to the high costs of facility-based long-term care. The median monthly cost for a home-health aide working five days per week is $3,813, which is unaffordable for many seniors or their families. In addition, there will be fewer family members available to help the next generation of older adults because of the rise in single-person households as well as the number of adults living without children.

Seniors strongly prefer living at home, even in cases where physical or cognitive decline makes it difficult to live independently. There are many studies that show seniors are happier and healthier if they’re able to remain in their homes instead of moving into assisted care facilities.

Focus Areas of Interest:

A critical goal for the 2020 Scale Up Accelerator is for GuideWell to identify a diverse portfolio of innovative approaches that enable seniors to maintain a healthy, happy lifestyle within their home and their community. GuideWell is particularly interested in solutions around the following themes:

  • Novel approaches to increase the affordability and accessibility of health care for seniors that are economically challenged, or that are cared for by a working family member
  • Easy-to-use solutions that enable seniors to improve overall physical and emotional wellness
  • Solutions that connect seniors into their communities
  • Solutions that empower seniors to easily conduct lifestyle tasks in a manner that eases the burden on family members caring for them

Cohort Company Criteria:

Eligible companies must be meet our minimum “Scale Up” requirements. A Scale Up is a growing technology startup that has clear traction in its chosen marketplace. Traction can be demonstrated by one or more of the following:

  • a minimum of $500,000 in revenues
  • $500,000 in seed capital raised
  • Verifiable (reference required) customer pilots
  • Accelerating product adoption (especially for consumer-focused solutions)

Key Benefits to Participating Companies:

  • Access to GuideWell’s national network of experienced health/wellness experts and technology entrepreneurs as mentors
  • Access to healthcare organizations within Orlando’s Lake Nona medical city and other healthcare organizations as customer prospects
  • Curated 2-day boot camp followed by a series of virtual workshops that focus on challenges in healthcare industry customer acquisition, regulatory compliance and other healthcare specific business topics
  • Opportunity to present to GuideWell’s curated heath tech investor matchmaking event

Program Timeline, Costs and Important Dates:

The cohort will run from January 23rd through March 9th, 2020.While GuideWell does not take equity or charge program fees, companies selected for the program are responsible for all travel and lodging costs to Orlando for the kickoff boot camp in January and the final matchmaking/investor event in March.

The kickoff boot camp will run from Jan 23-24, 2020, and will be held at the GuideWell Innovation Center in Orlando, FL. Each day will consist of a blend of workshops/speakers and 1:1 mentoring sessions with experienced health tech entrepreneurs and healthcare executives.

During weeks the following, the cohort companies will be matched with various mentors, and are expected to connect with mentors every week. In addition, each week will incorporate a series of virtual workshop sessions led by subject matter experts on key challenge topics faced by most early-stage health tech companies.

The GuideWell Scale Up Accelerator will wrap up with a full-day Investor Matchmaking Summit, which will also be held at the GuideWell Innovation Center in Orlando.

Key Dates:

  • December 8, 2019: Application Deadline
  • Jan 23-24: Kickoff boot camp at GuideWell Innovation Center (Orlando)
  • Jan 27-Mar 8: Ongoing virtual mentoring sessions, weekly virtual workshops, pitch preparation
  • Mar 9: Investor Matchmaking Summit (the day before HIMMS opens)
    • at GuideWell Innovation Center (Orlando)
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