New Canadian Medtech Accelerator Addresses Emerging Post-COVID Healthcare Needs

By Sam Brake Guia July 30, 2020

L-SPARK, a leading Canadian business and technology accelerator, and TELUS have collaborated to launch a medical technology (MedTech) accelerator program with BlackBerry, Solace, and the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA). 

The TELUS L-SPARK MedTech Accelerator provides a technology platform that allows MedTech innovators to quickly advance the creation, integration, and commercialization of connected medical devices and associated software. The platform will enable medical and wellness devices to be securely and privately connected from any location and be immediately usable and remotely manageable, which will facilitate data collection and analysis, including AI-enabled applications. Unique to the MedTech accelerator, the platform is also completely made in Canada, helping accelerator participants to more rapidly bring products and solutions to market – strengthening the Canadian supply chain of leading-edge healthcare solutions.

Connected medical devices are part of the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT), a segment that was already growing at 25% annually pre-COVID-19. It was predicted that by 2030, 40% of hospitals, practices, and healthcare organizations will have implemented IoMT into their processes – a rate that is likely to increase with the wider implementation of telehealth.

“As Canada’s largest healthcare technology company, we are committed to expanding the use of innovative solutions that support the ongoing efforts of healthcare leaders across Canada. Through secure, connected and privacy-enabled medical and wellness devices, clinicians can improve health outcomes for their patients and alleviate pressure in hospital emergency rooms and clinics,” said Ibrahim Gedeon, Chief Technology Officer, TELUS. “Through our collaboration with L-Spark we can help expedite the adoption of medical IoT technology and boost Canada’s economic recovery.”   

“COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of telehealth applications, and the ability to deploy various health monitoring devices that can securely connect patients and clinicians remotely will further enhance the accessibility of care,” said Leo Lax, Executive Managing Director of L-SPARK. “These technologies will be essential to the future of healthcare.”

The platform addresses the security and data privacy concerns that accompany the wide use of connected devices and is in alignment with emerging global IoT security standards.

The TELUS L-SPARK MedTech Accelerator builds on the earlier success of L-SPARK’s Secure IoT Accelerator program that saw companies build solutions on a proof of concept platform created by TELUS, BlackBerry and Solace in 2019. “The accelerator is intended to help shorten the time to market for this platform by 2-3 years, thus bringing this critical capability to the MedTech industry in record time,” said Leo Lax, Executive Managing Director of L-SPARK.

Companies taking part in the new six-month accelerator program will receive pre-commercial access to the platform technology along with the technical support to help integrate their medical devices and software solutions. L-SPARK provides the business mentorship to accelerate the growth of the participating companies and facilitates relationships with healthcare organizations to provide feedback and help validate the companies’ solutions. 

“We’re thrilled to partner with TELUS, Solace, CIRA and L-SPARK to help Canadian innovators lead the world in medical technology development,” said Charles Eagan, Chief Technology Officer, BlackBerry. “It’s incumbent upon all manufacturers to deliver safe and secure IoMT devices that patients and healthcare providers can trust and with the BlackBerry QNX operating system as the platform’s foundation, the MedTech Accelerator is an excellent place to start.”

“As IoT devices become more common in healthcare environments, device security is now inextricably linked to patient health. Insecure IoT devices can cost more than personal information loss,” said Jacques Latour, chief technology officer, CIRA. “We are proud to leverage our innovative IoT Registry solution as part of the L-Spark MedTech initiative as we bring our decades of experience securing Canada’s internet to the internet-connected devices that will transform our healthcare system.”

“The importance of efficiently distributing real-time data about test results, treatments and outcomes has never been greater, making it imperative that we advance the state of the art of IoMT as quickly as possible.” said Shawn McAllister, Solace’s chief technology officer. “We’re proud to partner with leaders at BlackBerry, TELUS, CIRA and L-Spark to make reliable, secure, real-time data distribution part of the MedTech Accelerator so Canadian innovators can lead the way in this area.”

The TELUS L-SPARK MedTech Accelerator program is currently accepting applications from companies developing medical devices and applications. Ideal applicants will have a Canadian headquarters as well as the required team and capacity to execute projects during the accelerator program timeframe.

Interested applicants are encouraged to visit to learn more.

Disclosure: This article includes a client of an Espacio portfolio company