Bringing a health tech incubator to fruition | Waterloo Medtech proceedings

health tech incubator in Waterloo Region

There is now an optimism that the once fragmented players in Waterloo Region are beginning to coalesce in support of scaling health tech.

Waterloo Medtech has just launched their latest proceedings report discussed here. The new Medical Innovation Xchange in Kitchener opened in January. Communitech has announced a new Velocity micro VC-fund for the medtech sector. Google is opening an accelerator in the region.  

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Landmark Medical Innovation Xchange opens

Medical Innovation Exchange, MIX opening, Waterloo Region

A landmark step to see the pioneering new Medical Innovation Xchange (MIX) open in Waterloo Region. 

“There are inherent advantages of Canada’s entrepreneurial environment for medtech start-ups, but unfortunately, resources deplete at a shocking rate when those companies begin to scale,” described Intellijoint Surgical’s Rebecca MacIntyre in introducing the MIX roundtable discussion.

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Building a Successful Medtech Infrastructure

Waterloo MedTech conference, Medtech infrastructure, Waterloo

“It’s time we built an integrated medtech incubator in this community, it would solve many of the problems we have heard about,” stated panellist Murray Gamble at the conclusion of the 2018 Waterloo MedTech conference.

Here we preview the 2019 conference on Building a Successful Medtech Infrastructure that tries to mobilize that call to action. We just need the will to make it happen in Waterloo Region. Watch the video interviews below to learn how this could be a worthwhile investment of your time to attend on October 2.

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Three simple tips to create impressive event reviews

Physician-led health tech innovation, Technology & the Futures of Health Care 2019 conference, gregiej, event reviews

The ability to create quality event reviews is a skill, yet one that can be acquired. Here we explore three simple tips to help you produce event summaries seamlessly.

In each case, an element of planning is needed. Don’t wait until after the event to consider the content of the review. Start amassing material from the second you arrive so that crafting it into a summary is easy.


Video is attractive for many reasons. Here are just some of these reasons to include it:

  • It improves the engagement of an event review blog post when included early on;
  • From the video, you can take a quote. We use a tool called Trint to obtain a transcript of the video clips;
  • You already have everything you need to obtain a video. Read this post about using an iPhone to create a video.

Ask engaging presenters for a short video interview. These are 30-40 seconds in length. We use the same three questions every time.

  1. Who are you?
  2. Where are you?
  3. Why is this important?


We tweet our way through conferences. We start with a photo of the outside of the venue. We create a 30-second selfie video.

“Good morning and welcome to day 1 of the xxxxx conference in xxxxx. Follow hashtag #xxxxxx.”

We try to tweet photos of each speaker, panel and pertinent slides. The quality is good enough when posted as tweets. We don’t use the images of slides but these can be added as lists within the event review summary. We capture short quotes from the speakers as tweets.

“The economic impact of the work you do cannot be overstated. I am extraordinarily impressed with your ingenuity, said Steven Del Duca, Minister of Economic Development and Growth in his opening keynote. “This is just the start of Ontario’s Medtech story.”

Why you ask? First, to catalogue a chronology of the event. Second, because publishing up to 10,000 tweets a year means we have become highly efficient in using it to build brand authority. Read what we learned from 10,000 tweets in 12-months here. Every tweet uses the event hashtag.

A day or so after the event, we can then search the event hashtag on Twitter, and we now have a complete record of the event from our own and others’ tweets. Drafting an event review becomes infinitely more manageable. There have been some occasions, where we have lifted a quote directly from a tweet. Or, we have included a screenshot of the tweet in a post.

MS Society Canada, Dr Karen Lee, Hack4Health,


The launch of e-readers failed to temper our inherent desire to read printed books. And, despite our shortening attention spans, we recognize those leaders who are well read. It has been rare to attend any conference and not hear at least one speaker recommend a book or white paper document.

Eric Topol, Deep Medicine, Physician-led health tech innovation, TFHC2019

It appears that including a picture of you holding a book is not an infringement of copyright. This makes it easier to add a picture of the book cover in your post. Taking a picture of the book from the internet, on the other hand, would not be acceptable.

Sometimes, we have asked a speaker why they have recommended a book, then included as an interview or quote in the review. Here is a post entirely about 7 Toronto Health Innovation Week reads.

Stitching it all together

With so much potential material to collate in summary, the task is to pick out a connecting thread. We often write more than we publish and then delete sections that no longer support the emphasis of the story.

From attending the event, we have accumulated the following:

  • A landscape image of the venue;
  • A selfie video describing the event;
  • One or more short video with presenters;
  • A photograph of a panel of speakers;
  • A chronical of tweets;
  • Photos of pertinent slides;
  • A recommended book;
  • A list of website resources.

You have more than you need to craft an excellent summary. We always include hyperlinks to the organizations mentioned. Everything we ever publish has been edited repeatedly through both Grammarly and Hemingway Editor to ensure readability and accuracy. This post is written in plain-English.

These three simple tips work every time. Try it.


Hemingway Editor, event reviews, Opencity Inc, 3 tips for creating impressive event reviews

Health of people #CanMedTech2019

Health of people, Opencity Inc, MEDEC, MedTech, Health Innovation Week

Those with lived experience emphasized that a move toward patient-directed self-care is about seeing the health of people and not the healthcare of patients.

The 2019 MEDEC MedTech conference at the International Centre coincided again with the Toronto Health Innovation Week. Here we examine some of the core messages from the exceptional quality of speakers and panels discussions. Patient’s including Lori Pedersen brought an emotional atmosphere to the health executives.

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Putting ​humanity in healthcare – system level thinking


It was a courageous step to see one of the LHINs stepping up to run the #Convergence19 conference on system thinking at a time when changes towards Ontario Health may cause the majority to be focussing internally. We need bold, decisive leadership to prompt system-level thinking in healthcare.

Here we explore the superb #Convergence19 half-day session run by Waterloo-Wellington Local Health Integration network at the award-winning CIGI (Centre for International Governance in Innovation).

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New proceedings report points the way to scaling MedTech in Waterloo Region

Waterloo Region MedTech proceedings report

The release of the new proceedings report from the Waterloo MedTech conference could help solidify a jump off point for our support of health tech scale-up in the Waterloo Region. 

The proceedings report from the Canadian MedTech: What’s holding is back? shares how the conference wove the ideal balance of no-holds-barred storytelling, policy insights, and pertinent panel discussions. We explored the theme for this conference in our prior post What’s holding us back in Canadian MedTechThe over 200 attendees appreciated the top 7 innovators and start-ups showcase and the inaugural 2018 MedTech Awards.

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What’s holding us back in Canadian MedTech?

Canadian MedTech, Waterloo MedTech, Opencity Inc, conference, health tech

Kitchener-Waterloo is positioning itself as a driver in the health tech innovation landscape. Waterloo MedTech holds their third annual conference on October 24 exploring Canadian MedTech: What’s holding us back?

Here we preview what to expect from the conference and how it helps the Waterloo Region, Ontario and Canada strengthen its vision for innovation.

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Adoption of the Wound Care Quality Standards in Ontario

Wound Care Quality Standards, Ontario, RNAO, OntWIG symposium

Wound Care Quality Standards are the foundation for the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care in Ontario (MOHLTC).  The OntWIG symposium identified disconnects between the quality standards and practices around procurement, funding accessibility and inconsistencies in the continuum of care across the 14 Ontario Local Health Innovation Networks (LHIN).

Here we reflect on the thought-provoking Ontario Wound Interest Group (OntWIG) symposium that examined the adoption of the Health Quality Ontario quality standards covering diabetic foot ulcers, pressure injuries and venous leg ulcers.

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Patients Included | Toronto Health Innovation

Patients Included Hacking-Health-THIW-OpencityInc-gregiej

Toronto Health Innovation Week provided a spirit of optimism for the newest innovations. Patients Included should be the default way of working in health innovation and improvement.

We selected four 1-minute video interviews to include here to capture the essence and optimism of Toronto Health Innovation Week. Read our reflections on the MEDEC MedTech conference.

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