MATTER wraps up second 51 Labs women’s health accelerator

Ten startups working to reduce maternal mortality concluded the program with a final showcase to key stakeholders.

May 22, 2024, CHICAGO, IL — Today, 51 Labs, MATTER’s women’s health accelerator, wrapped up its challenge focused on advancing the development of innovations addressing maternal mortality in the United States. Following a keynote address from Dr. Elizabeth Cherot, president and CEO of March of Dimes, 10 startups delivered their pitches to a panel of industry experts and celebrated the conclusion of the program.

You can watch a replay of the final showcase, including each startup’s presentation, below:

In early 2023, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published new data showing that the number of women who died from pregnancy or a pregnancy-related cause in the U.S. increased 40 percent in 2021 compared to the prior year1. The rate itself is the highest it has been in the U.S. since 1965. To help address this crisis, MATTER and 51 Labs partners Health Care Service Corporation, Laerdal Million Lives Fund, BayCare, Parkview Health, University of Chicago Medicine, Organon and Stryker called on global innovators to submit applications with innovative healthcare solutions that reduce maternal mortality in the U.S. before, during and after birth.

From a pool of applications representing 21 states, a review panel of subject matter experts and industry leaders curated a cohort of 10 cutting-edge startups: Armor Medical, BAKS Medical, BioticsAI, Ciconia Medical, Elythea, Expect Fitness, Malama Health, NUA Surgical, Partum Health and Vasowatch. Over the course of 12 weeks, the cohort participated in a customized accelerator featuring one-on-one mentoring with industry experts, workshops, interactive roundtable discussions, forums and more. The cohort was guided by two entrepreneurship and venture capital veterans: Pamela York and Nicole Walker.

Each participating company had the option to take a $100,000 investment from the Laerdal Million Lives Fund. Each company also received $25,000 worth of services from MATTER, including a six-month MATTER membership following the accelerator to continue their access to learning and development opportunities and connections to capital, customers and a dynamic community of healthcare innovators.

MATTER is currently developing the next 51 Labs program, which will be focused on another topic critical to women’s health. If you are interested in getting involved, please email


  1. Maternal Mortality Rates in the United States, 2021,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2023.

At MATTER, we believe collaboration is the best way to improve healthcare. The MATTER collaborative includes more than 1,000 current and alumni startups from around the world, working together with dozens of hospitals and health systems, universities and industry-leading companies to build the future of healthcare. Together we are accelerating innovation, advancing care and improving lives. For more information, visit and follow @MATTERhealth.

About HCSC
Health Care Service Corporation is the country’s largest customer-owned health insurer, serving more than 18.6 million members in its health plans in Illinois, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. A Mutual Legal Reserve Company, HCSC is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

Health Care Service Corporation is the country’s largest customer-owned health insurer, serving more than 18.6 million members in its health plans in Illinois, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. A Mutual Legal Reserve Company, HCSC is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

About Laerdal Million Lives Fund
The Million Lives Fund invests in entrepreneurs who are developing and deploying new, emerging technologies capable of saving lives and enhancing healthcare quality and outcomes regardless of demographics or geography. The $100 million fund targets digital health and technology companies whose solutions can improve mortality rates and help reach its goal of helping to save 1 million lives annually by 2030. Investments span across medical education innovations to early interventions, therapeutics and tech-enabled care models. For more information, visit

About BayCare
BayCare is a leading not-for-profit healthcare system that connects individuals and families to a wide range of services at 16 hospitals and hundreds of other convenient locations throughout the Tampa Bay and central Florida regions. The system is West Central Florida’s largest provider of behavioral health and pediatric services and its provider group, BayCare Medical Group, is one of the largest in the region. BayCare’s diverse network of ambulatory services includes laboratories, imaging, surgical centers, BayCare Urgent Care locations, wellness centers and one of Florida’s largest home care agencies, BayCare HomeCare. Its Medicare Advantage insurance, BayCarePlus, is among the region’s few 5-star-rated plans and the system is ranked in the top 20 percent of large health systems in the country by FORUTNE/MerativeTM. BayCare’s mission is to improve the health of all it serves through community-owned, health care services that set the standard for high-quality, compassionate care.

About Parkview Health
Parkview Health is a not-for-profit, community-based health system serving a northeast Indiana and northwest Ohio population of more than 1.3 million. Parkview Health’s mission is to improve health and inspire well-being in the communities it serves. With more than 16,000 co-workers, it is the region’s largest employer. Parkview Health includes 13 hospitals and an extensive network of primary care and specialty care physicians. The flagship Parkview Regional Medical Center campus includes services such as the Parkview Packnett Family Cancer Institute, Parkview Heart Institute, Samaritan flight and ground transport program, Parkview Ortho Hospital, a certified stroke center, verified adult and pediatric trauma centers, Women’s & Children’s Hospital and an outpatient services center. Parkview has been named one of America’s Best-In-State Employers by Forbes and made Newsweek’s list of Top 100 Most Loved Workplaces.

About University of Chicago Medicine
The University of Chicago Medicine, with a history dating back to 1927, is one of the nation’s leading academic medical institutions. UChicago Medicine comprises the University of Chicago Medical Center, which offers a full range of primary and specialty care for adults and children through more than 40 institutes and centers; Ingalls Memorial, a community-based hospital and outpatient facility; a micro-hospital in northwest Indiana, a network of outpatient clinics and physician practices throughout Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana; the Pritzker School of Medicine, one of the top medical schools in the nation; and the University of Chicago Biological Sciences Division, with an affiliated 12 Nobel Prize winners in physiology or medicine.

About Stryker
Stryker is one of the world’s leading medical technology companies and, together with its customers, is driven to make healthcare better. The company offers innovative products and services in Medical and Surgical, Neurotechnology, Orthopaedics and Spine that help improve patient and healthcare outcomes. Alongside its customers around the world, Stryker impacts more than 130 million patients annually. More information is available at

About Organon
Organon is a global healthcare company formed to focus on improving the health of women throughout their lives. Organon offers more than 60 medicines and products in women’s health in addition to a growing biosimilars business and a large franchise of established medicines across a range of therapeutic areas. Organon’s existing products produce strong cash flows that support investments in innovation and future growth opportunities in women’s health and biosimilars. In addition, Organon is pursuing opportunities to collaborate with biopharmaceutical innovators looking to commercialize their products by leveraging its scale and presence in fast growing international markets.

Organon has a global footprint with significant scale and geographic reach, world-class commercial capabilities, and approximately 10,000 employees with headquarters located in Jersey City, New Jersey.

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