Health Ventures is a suite of courses that teach entrepreneurs how to transform health innovation ideas into business ventures. Courses are offered at both the undergraduate level or through McMaster Continuing Education with the option of earning a Certificate of Professional Learning

The Health Ventures program helps learners develop the essential entrepreneurial skills to identify opportunities, design innovative solutions, and bring health innovation to market.

Founded in Monterrey, Mexico in 2019, Cardiotrack is the sixth business started by CEO Eduardo Serna. His work as a volunteer firefighter and paramedic sparked an interest in the health sector which led him to found a paramedic support company in 1999. He has founded multiple spinout companies since then that primarily provide occupational health supports.

Eduardo co-founded Cardiotrack to streamline the health and safety checks of workers in Mexico. By law, employees are required to have their blood pressure checked daily before they are allowed to operate heavy machinery.

“I love technology, I love machine learning and I thought that there was a big space for medicine to get in on the digital wave,” Eduardo recalled of his vision to automate the health check process. 

Typically, a nurse would be on-site to conduct approximately 50 blood pressure checks per shift. With the help of his co-founders Itzel Alvarez and Daniel Hernandez, Eduardo developed kiosks for workers to have their blood pressure recorded and analyzed. Data collected from over 70 kiosks sold to companies based in Mexico prompted co-founder Dr. Daniel Hernandez to lead a study on hypertension. Through his research, he discovered that 30% of the individuals in the study were not aware they were hypertensive. This finding prompted the Cardiotrack team to add a feature that recommends doctor visits after multiple high blood pressure measurements.

“One thing I really love about healthcare is that you can really make an impact. If you can prevent a heart attack or stroke, you can really change a life -- not only for that person but for their whole family.”

Cardiotrack’s success in Mexico encouraged Eduardo’s interest to bring the company to Canada as a first step in pursuing the goal of becoming a global company. When he met Sarrah Lal, Director of Health Ventures development, he joined Health Ventures level 1 because he was excited to pitch his team’s solution to clinicians. When Health Ventures level 2 launched in the spring of 2021, he was eager to continue his educational journey.

“We are seasoned entrepreneurs but it’s like the first time you get back to the product and [the problem it solves]," Eduardo said. “It’s been really helpful to have that process. All these other programs [we’re part of] are geared to tech, but here, we’re talking about life science-specific opportunities.” 

Cardiotrack is currently offering demos of their health screening automation platforms and EHR integration through registration on their website.

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