Jason Berek-Lewis Creator, Healthy Startups
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Maybe you are just like me and you believe there are few industries as ripe for disruption as healthcare. You probably also agree that big behemoths like corporates, health insurers, large hospitals and governments aren't going to be the ones that drive real, fundamental change. You and I think alike: entrepreneurs, startups, disruptors are the ones who are going to forever shake up the way healthcare is delivered and accessed in the western world.
If you are reading this blog, then I'm guessing you also share some of my ambition: you either want to found a healthcare startup of your own or you are keen to work for one. The problem might just be that you are sitting there, reading this blog and waiting for the Big Idea to strike... And you have been waiting for a long time - months, maybe even years.
The good news might just be that you don't need to come up with your own healthcare startup. Maybe, you just need to clone one...
Why the health startup ecosystem needs clones - right now!
Across the western world many nations are facing similar health challenges: obesity, rapidly ageing populations, shortages of medical professionals and ever growing healthcare costs, driven by ever expaning red tape, the pace of technological change and the ageing of the Baby Boomers.
We might share common challenges across the United Kingdom, parts of Europe, throught Canada, Australia and the United States of America, but approaches that work in one country, don't necessarily work elsewhere... or do they?
While we share common challenges, we also live with different systems of government, our own constitutions, tax and financial systems. Our tax laws are different, the rules around founding businesses will be unique to each jurisdiction, as will the maturity of the angel investor community and the approach by big institutions towards putting money in to startups.
All of these reasons highlight why you should clone a successful healthcare startup right now!
Who or what should I clone?
The answer to that question really depends on your local circumstances. But, some of the common issues populations face in the Western World are the rising costs of healthcare, including healthcare insurance; the difficulties in getting timely access to specialist and generalist medical care; the challenges of staying fit and healthy when our scarcest resource is time; cutting through the noise to access relevant, specific, actionable, credible and evidence based healthcare information; understanding when and how to share information on social networks; sourcing, accessing and understanding data to drive improvements in our healthcare.
Take a look at healthcare startups in the USA that are meeting some of these challenges. You can read about some of them - including Scanadu and Simplee - on our Startup Blog (click here http://healthystartups.com/startup-blog). Can you replicate these businesses in your own country? What about a startup like ZocDoc? I see no reason why you shouldn't start working on a local solution to helping people find and book appointments with a doctor right now...
A word of warning...
Clones are not always a success: just ask Spider-Man or the Jedi (excuse the pop culture references, I'll get serious again in just a moment!). A successful business and business model in the USA may not replicate so well in Australia (for reasons listed above), but also for reasons of culture, economy, timing and more. If you are determined to clone your way to success, be wary. Startup success is often elusive for the originals, so while cloning might seem like a surer bet... well nothing is ever sure in entrepreneurship is it?
Do you think it's a good/ safer idea to clone an existing healthcare startup? Which healthcare startup would you clone?