Healthcare Heroes: Mon Health System launches a new medical innovation start-up studio

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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Intermed Labs at Mon Health is set to officially open on Monday, December 14 and with that opening comes to a lot of promise for the state of West Virginia.

The startup studio aims to turn innovative medical ideas into viable businesses right here in West Virginia. Dr. Tom McClellan, co-founder and chief executive officer, said there is a big shortcoming for advancing innovation in the state that he hopes to change through Intermed Labs.

“It provides a physical infrastructure for people to come to and it most importantly creates a human infrastructure to where a doctor in Clarksburg, or Bridgeport, has an idea but doesn’t know where to go,” McClellan said. “To get an idea actually to market is very difficult, there are a lot of steps you have to go through, there are a lot of places you can fail and the most important one is team. Having immediate access to one team that is down the road, that has experience to take something to market just doesn’t exist in the state.”

Currently, some of the ideas they are working on include a device to improve scars after surgery, an app design for people with bipolar, as well as anxiety disorders and an orthopedic needle to help surgeons with shoulder and knee repair. A team is exactly what Intermed has built to bring these ideas to life.

A look at the startup studio space that’s still under construction

When doors open on Monday, McClellan said, there will be roughly 10 employees including interns who will be ready to turn ideas into reality.

That team includes Chief Operating Officer Drew Lytton, Chief Engineering Officer Dr. Justin Chambers and Chief Technology Officer Ashok Aggarwal. Chambers and Aggarwal are also co-founders.

Like McClellan, Chambers said he too was excited about what the future holds for the startup studio.

“You’ll notice a lot of a passion here and that’s what we like to do, so that’s I think what’s driving it,” Chambers said. “And everyone on the team is extremely passionate about it so I think it’s very exciting and it’s very satisfying as these things start coming together. Overall, it’s very exciting for us.”

Lytton, the COO, echoed that sentiment, saying he thinks being able to bring this service to West Virginia has been and will continue to be gratifying.

“It’s rewarding on a number of levels,” Lytton said. “As a resident, born and raised in West Virginia, it’s really important to me to make sure we’re doing things to help move the state forward and bring true innovation to this area so we can keep moving the state forward.”

McClellan may not see himself as a hero, but as one of the minds behind Intermed Labs, he certainly is one for dreaming so big and wanting to help the state in such a critical way.

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