Javier Bacho
System Director LATAM Operations
The CHRISTUS Excellence and Innovation Center
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Santiago Yeomans
Health Research and Innovation Director
The CHRISTUS Excellence and Innovation Center
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View from the Top

Innovation Measured Through Impact, Not Revenue

By Miriam Bello | Fri, 04/23/2021 - 18:41

Q: CHRISTUS CEI supports a diverse project portfolio. What projects are you involved in now?

SY: Our portfolio is directly aligned with our vision of innovation in healthcare. We consider that Innovation and R&D is not about high-tech, sophisticated AI or robotics solutions; it is about personal, engaging, reliable, and patient-centric strategy, involving communities, physicians, and nurses with significant improvements in various healthcare scenarios. All our sustainable and scalable new operational models focus on patients’ experience and outcomes.

CHRISTUS CEI has a growing solution portfolio, that works with a group of healthcare organizations and connects opportunities for clinical and operational performance improvement and provide savings in CAPEX and operational expenditure. It finds performance improvement opportunities along the patient value journey. The virtuous cycle provided by this operation is a good example of what CHRISTUS CEI is looking to grow. We have a close relationship with both the health sector stakeholders.

From a R&D standpoint, this has enabled us the opportunity to boost entrepreneurial or research projects in collaboration with academic, healthcare, corporate and institutional stakeholders wanting to impact change in the healthcare market. Our network and relationships with industry leaders has allowed us to provide value in accelerating innovation, by being adaptable and diverse intermediary for the people behind R&D projects.

JB: This year, we are interested in deepening our relationships with stakeholders but also with innovative projects that are ready to take off. As an example, digital platform development employing data analytics, AI and biometrics is on the rise. Through these types of projects, we are hoping to improve communication tools that benefit the Trust Relationship between a patient-consumer and a physician or healthcare provider. To achieve this, we know that these platforms need to be aligned with health protocols and a physician group or provider service models to deliver a meaningful user experience using digital health solutions.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to unfold, the MedTech market has been maturing rapidly. As a result, expectations for new market players have increased and in this new scenario, CHRISTUS CEI has a clear focus on delivering groundbreaking products that are valuable in improving health outcomes in our communities.

Q: How does CHRISTUS CEI measure the impact of its projects on the targeted population?

JB: Beyond a project’s financial projections, CHRISTUS CEI focuses on the impact a product has on clinical excellence, consumer experience and access to quality care. Our investment criteria are founded in quality of care and improving access to care. With this foundation, we have very energetic discussion surrounding product potential - is the product truly transformational. Our goal is to improve the overall health service provision. Technology plays a fundamental role in this equation and we believe it can have a long-term sustainable impact on health access.

CHRISTUS CEI has also invested in basic research projects in different fields of health sciences, such as geriatrics and diabetes, which are both prominent public health opportunities in Mexico. These projects bring forth the values of CHRISTUS Health in our efforts to provide more integral care to improve health and avoid disease before the need for corrective interventions. We are looking at projects that target diagnosis, treatment continuity, better and broader access. These benefits range from primary care to specialized diseases and the improvement permeates the entire chain.

Q: How could Mexico create a more favorable environment for innovation in the country?

SY: Regulation is a priority but we should not blame regulation for our challenges in the innovation sector. As actors in this industry, we need to continue working to develop projects and products, as we coordinate to update our regulatory environment. If the regulatory authorities see the sector is thriving and see the impact that our solutions are having on the health system, regulations will follow. For instance, right now, telemedicine is being widely used but we are still pending a sound regulatory framework because there was no need for one in the past. As telemedicine becomes increasingly adopted by providers and patients, regulatory authorities will indeed respond. We feel strongly in contributing to a collaborative culture, the healthcare sector can unite to validate processes such as telemedicine to make regulatory processes much more efficient. We cannot stop creating just because the regulation is not there yet. I think we can all keep looking for productive, collaborative networks to continue delivering helpful solutions for the health sector.

Q: What profile of researchers or entrepreneurs does CHRISTUS CEI typically work with?

SY: We evaluate ideas based on the maturity of the project. This means that we review their targeted market, the solution as such (its unique value proposition) and the team behind it, the talent.

Q: How can early investment on innovation make a difference for Mexico and why should the country bet on it?

JB: Mexico must continue increasing investment in innovation. Simple ideas transform into movements that solve problems. The market is responsive to innovative initiatives and investors willing to invest capital in innovative health projects are often aware of the trends in the industry. Finding these investors, however, is difficult. I think that once most venture capital firms begin to look at this sector with trust, innovation in Mexico will kick off, along with regulation.

 

The CHRISTUS Excellence and Innovation Center (CHRISTUS CEI) provides innovative solutions and consulting services to help health organizations improve their quality of care and operate efficiently in clinical integration, transformational growth and data analytics.

Miriam Bello Miriam Bello Journalist and Industry Analyst