VA Health Care and MIT are partnering in need-driven biomedical research and innovation initiatives through the Catalyst program

Innovation at the VA

With support from top leadership, the VA has been building and expanding the VHA Innovation Ecosystem.  VA-Boston is a part of the Innovators Network that allows employees access to Spark-Seed-Spread Investment competition.  The VA also has the Technology Transfer Program (TTP), which serves to facilitate commercialization of VA inventions to benefit Veterans and the American public and to support inventors to protect, market and license Intellectual Property (IP).

Why is VA-Boston supporting and promoting the Catalyst program?

Boston VA leadership supports Catalyst because it aligns with existing initiatives that encourage, recognize, and reward a culture of innovation to improve healthcare.  Leadership is also aware that there are limited opportunities, especially for clinicians, to be involved in innovation because of limited access to time, research and business mentorship, non-clinical expertise (engineering, design, …), and funding.  The Catalyst experience helps overcome those challenges.

Why should you, a VA clinician, become a Catalyst Fellow?

You are intimately aware of high priority challenges, needs, and opportunities, which means you are well positioned to influence impactful changes. You have the opportunity to:

Enhance your career  

You can strengthen your communication skills to work more effectively with business and industry leaders, gain confidence in engaging on cross-disciplinary teams (with engineers, researchers, and improvement advisors), and contribute to creation of intellectual property. 

Consider the commercial possibilities of improving patient outcomes and institutional effectiveness

In this program, you will work with teams of engineers, scientists, and other clinicians to identify, validate, and create a path to implementation for technologies and processes that create solutions in healthcare delivery.

Expand your personal horizon

You will exercise entrepreneurial thinking and increase comfort with ambiguity. Validated projects have the potential to significantly impact healthcare. You might even create and lead a company, as Catalyst Fellows have done in the past and are doing now.

High Priority Focus Areas

The focus for the Spring 2020 cohort is on exploring unmet needs and identifying opportunities in priority areas including: access to healthcare, patient and caregiver safety, and prevention, detection, and treatment of mental health conditions. Click here for the full program overview.

Details and application

Your commitment is 10-12 hours per week. Weekly sessions: Mondays from 9am to 12pm, January 6 to June 29, 2020

Apply now