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MedMates: Fostering Health-Tech Growth Through Collaboration

Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island and Founders League are collaborating to showcase local companies pioneering new health and wellness solutions. The diversity of these companies captures the depth of activity happening across Rhode Island’s startup scene and highlights the global impact these companies are already having on the world. Below is the third in a nine-part blog series on these special local companies.

Would you believe that since Facebook launched in 2004, we’ve transplanted human faces, mapped the human genome, and grown human tissue in a lab? The pace of innovation in health-technology is astounding—with especially impressive feats happening at the intersection of basic science and startups.

Rhode Island-based MedMates is on the front line of this incredible convergence, creating a community of innovators who connect around the boundless limits of health and wellness technologies.

MedMates is Rhode Island's first healthcare technology network group dedicated to galvanizing collaboration between health-tech companies, hospitals, universities, sources of capital and governmental partners. MedMates members have deep experience in the fast-changing health-tech field, ranging from startups to mature companies and everything in between. They channel these resources toward supporting health-tech ventures grow in the Ocean State.

Since launching in 2013, MedMates has built an impressive—and interconnected—web of talent, a robust entrepreneurial launchpad and worked hard to shape public policy that impacts the industry.

One of MedMates’ guiding principles is that “there will be value for every member.” Collaboration fosters growth, and MedMates truly embodies this belief. When setting up your personal profile, MedMates lets you tell the community what you have to offer your peers, citing your professional experience and personal goals. Whether you’re an ambitious medical student doing research or a Venture Capital firm looking to invest in a new health-technology, MedMates seeks to be the community that supports the innovator in all of us.

MedMates was born from a conversation started at the Rhode Island Foundation’s “Make It Happen RI” event in September 2012. In January 2013, the foundation awarded MedMates $50,000 to create Rhode Island’s first health-tech industry network group. MedMates quickly grew to include more than 600+ members from the academic, biotech, diagnostics, government, information technology, medical device and pharmaceutical sectors. The team is now refining a comprehensive database of members and local resources, targeted programming for the med-tech sector, and innovative private-public workforce development initiatives, which will allow MedMates to generate awareness on a national scale of the state’s capabilities as a hub of biotech and life sciences innovation and excellence.

No doubt that for for the talented team at MedMates, the sky’s the limit. Learn more and connect at

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