Anne Wellington, Managing Director, Cedars-Sinai Accelerator

After graduating four classes and 37 companies, this leading accelerator is breaking new ground. Again.

In this episode we’re talking about accelerators. Accelerators have been around since about 2005 and in the last 5 or 6 years, we’ve seen the development of new accelerators and programs that focus on the unique needs of entrepreneurs who are working to create new solutions for the healthcare sector. Accelerators are designed to accelerate the development of the ideas and solutions that will make the biggest impact, and, as we will hear about on this episode, they also accelerate failure so that entrepreneurs and investors can save valuable time and resources and apply their talents to other solutions.

To get the low-down on what accelerators do to succeed, we reached out to the managing director of one of the best-known health-focused accelerators, Anne Wellington. Anne is the managing director of the Cedars-Sinai Accelerator in Los Angeles. She’s been a part of the accelerator since March 2016, and she shares insights on their experiences as a healthcare organization working at the leading, bleeding edge of health innovation. Anne also shares some of the changes underway at Cedars-Sinai, and the opportunities available for startups in their upcoming 2019 class.

We know of course that things operate differently in healthcare, and governments, universities, corporations, investors, and even hospital systems have created special programs to provide the resources, access and environment to help startups create the products and services that are changing the face of healthcare. We also have a page in our Resources area that covers some of the programs that are available to help startups.

There are several organizations and links listed on that page and we also have other episodes of this podcast where we spoke with some of other leaders from these programs including the podcasts we’ve done with Eugene Borukhovich from Bayer G4A, Fred Toney of Launchpad Digital Health, and Christian Seale from Startup Bootcamp. Tune in to this episode to hear Anne's perspective on how Cedars-Sinai Accelerator is creating winning solutions and startups.

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Today's Topics

  • The broad scope of work surrounding Cedar-Sinai as a health care provider
  • The genesis of the Cedars-Sinai Accelerator program
  • The range of solutions that participate and benefit from accelerators
  • How Cedars-Sinai works as an advocate for startups
  • The key lessons she learned working in an Accelerator program, addressing the challenges along the way and best practices
  • The future plans for Cedars-Sinai Accelerator 
  • Applications for class five are open until Feb 15, 2019!

Links and Resources Mentioned

Lightning Round Answers

1- What is a saying, quote or phrase that motivates you?

“Perfect is the enemy of good enough”

2- What advice do you have for others working to innovate in healthcare?

Understand the problem that you are solving and develop empathy for the people who are engaged in the workflow. Because the closer you can collaborate with the end user, the better your solution will be.

3- What book do you recommend to our listeners?

The Emerald Mile: The Epic Story of the Fastest Ride in History Through the Heart of the Grand Canyon by Kevin Fedarko

4- What is a piece of technology that you recommend to our listeners?

A Rice Cooker! – How about this popular one: Instant Pot Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Sauté, Yogurt Maker and Warmer…it's on our gift list for the holidays!

5- If I gave you a check for $5 million for you to invest in health technology today, how would you invest it?

Clinical decision support companies

6. We make a contribution to a charity in appreciation of your time on the show – what charity have you selected and can you tell us a little about what they do?

International Rescue Committee

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Dan Kendall

Dan Kendall


As an engineer and business leader, I've worked to develop, launch and scale innovative products and solutions that impact health and wellness. As an entrepreneur, I know firsthand what it takes to start a business, build a team, and compete in the global marketplace.

On Digital Health Today, I leverage my experiences to help great leaders and innovators tell their stories and connect to users, investors and other stakeholders.

Connect with me on LinkedIn and Twitter.