Join our program.

Do you have an idea for an innovation to improve the health & wellness of underserved communities in LA County?

The Heal.LA Bioscience & Healthcare Accelerator program is a 9-month hands-on experience — we invest in diverse entrepreneurs to nurture and scale innovations that positively impact the health and wellness of communities in Los Angeles.

Since 1993, Larta Institute has helped over 4,500 startups, and our alumni have raised over $7 billion in funds.

Our accelerator program begins in April 2024.
Apply now to join the cohort in Los Angeles.

Tell us about your idea & vision — and our team will be in touch with next steps & more info.

View 2024 cohort.

We had a large batch of impressive applications, each with a unique approach to improve the health & wellness of underserved communities in LA County.

Sign up for our newsletter!

Stay up to date on all things Heal.LA with our monthly Heal.LA Newsletter. This newsletter includes program activities, such as upcoming events and ways to support our Fellows along with Fellow features and highlights and keeping up with our Alumni.

Funding & Support for Good Ideas.

Underserved, low-income, and minority populations within urban communities are severely at-risk from a growing health crisis. With Los Angeles County being the most diverse region in the country, public service agencies are working to better understand the needs of these diverse communities and introduce new practical solutions to improve the health & wellness of all. We believe the urgent action needed to combat this health challenge can be spearheaded by innovators from within the places most impacted here in LA – to spark a vision and demonstrate an idea’s potential, so that new impact can be scaled to many more communities across the country.

Access to Care & Financial Equity

Local urban communities face restricted access to healthcare providers, including a shortage of available doctors. Additionally, residents require a diverse range of providers who understand their cultural and linguistic backgrounds. These challenges are exacerbated for individuals lacking documentation to access various social benefits or experiencing educational barriers. Consequently, the Emergency Room often serves as the primary care option for many. While numerous hardworking residents juggle multiple jobs to meet their basic needs, the cost of preventive healthcare and treatments remains prohibitively high. It is imperative for communities to have equitable access to affordable healthcare services.

We are looking for community-led approaches that collaborate with municipalities, such as community health research, policy analysis & funding, healthcare workforce training, in- community clinics, and affordable healthcare solutions.

Disease Screening, Prevention, & Treatment

Rates of routine screening and early detection for common diseases are lower in disadvantaged neighborhoods than in affluent areas, which often have better coverage through private healthcare plans. Mortality rates are disproportionately higher in low-income areas, particularly for chronic respiratory, cancer, and cardiovascular disorders. Disease prevention be strengthened by public education and programs to reduce risk from environmental factors, such as air pollution. Disease treatment options should be democratized for all.

We seek community-led approaches that collaborate with municipalities, such as public healthcare education, at-home disease screening, community-based screening, pollution mitigation/reduction, and the democratization of treatments.

Holistic Well-Being, including Nutritious Foods & Mental Health

Healthcare must evolve beyond conventional thinking that is focused solely on "physical disease" to now consider system-wide aspects of "well-being" in order to improve the health of all, from infants to senior patients. The lack of access to nutritious meals, food choices, and poor diet is a major contributor to high-cost reactive care and management in underserved neighborhoods. Furthermore, mental healthcare is critical for community members, including programs to normalize and lessen the stigma around care.

We are dedicated to supporting community-led approaches that work in collaboration with municipalities, including aspects like food & water security, local urban farming, affordable grocery stores, mental health education, and a diversity of therapy services.

The Heal.LA program is supported by leading organizations in the LA region.

Program Funders.

Program Partners.

The 1:1 mentorship provided us with valuable guidance on business strategy and helped us to better understand how to prepare an effective business pitch. This mentorship gave us the opportunity to learn from an experienced domain expert and receive personalized feedback on our ideas and approach.

Hando Kim

2023 Heal.LA BioScience Accelerator Cohort Member
Founder & CEO, Innometive

Applications are closed.

The Heal.LA Program is a 9-month commitment — helping you move from an idea to startup launch and growth.

Up to 30 applicants who have good ideas for Los Angeles communities will be selected to participate in the 2024 program. Applications will be open from October 2023 to late February 2024. The program is scheduled to begin in April 2024, and will run until December 2024.

Program Overview & Benefits.

The Heal.LA Program is a 9-month commitment — helping you move from an idea to startup launch.

Powered by Larta Institute, the program serves as a development platform for promising bioscience & healthcare startups and aspiring entrepreneurs in underserved communities across the Los Angeles region.

We are seeking bioscience and healthcare innovations across a spectrum of stages.  

For those in the early stages, our Early Stage Track provides invaluable guidance around product development and validation, market entry, and regulatory compliance readiness. Our expert team and tailored curriculum will assist in crafting a proof of concept through activities like validation-oriented studies, user characterization, and comprehensive market research. This track culminates in the creation of a pilot plan, poised to drive further support, mobilize advocates, and unlock potential funding opportunities.

For more mature innovations, our Advanced Stage Track is tailored to drive established products or services towards specific targeted outcomes. This track provides guidance in scaling, market expansion, connecting with strategic partners and investors, and ensuring regulatory compliance.

Expert Mentorship

Dedicated 1:1 mentorship to commercialize your innovation from LA’s top life science experts.

Pilot your Product

Develop & scale your innovation in partnership with Heal.LA’s leading healthcare partners.

Non-Dilutive Funding

Collaborate with our grant writing experts to apply for and win non-dilutive government SBIR funding.


Participate in exclusive Demo Days to pitch to a curated network of active investors.

Program Details.

Program Overview

Heal.LA’s accelerator is designed to identify, nurture and scale biosciences healthcare in SoCal. The program is designed to help accelerate the market readiness (partnering and investment) of aspiring & underserved entrepreneurs in the Los Angeles region.

Who's Eligible?

The program is open to everyone, and we highly encourage applications from diverse & underrepresented innovators & founders including:

– Minority & women-led ideas and/or startups
– Innovators from marginalized communities
– Academic / student innovators (individuals or teams)
– Social entrepreneurs & grass-roots organizations


The Heal.LA Bioscience & Healthcare Accelerator program is no cost to selected applicants. There are no fees or equity to pay. The program is funded by the State of California Governor’s Office of Small Business & Economic Development, U.S. Small Business Association (SBA), and Gilead Sciences.

Enrollment Deadlines

Applications open October 15, 2023 – and will be open until late 2024 February, 2024


The program is a 9-month commitment, from April 2024 to December 2024.


This is a part-time program intended to run alongside your
education or job. We expect the hours required per week to vary depending on phase of the cohort.

Steering Committee.

Thank you to our team of advisors for supporting this program.

Larta Institute

Gunjan Siroya


Camilo Ansarah-Sobrinho

Lindsay Bourgeois
BioLabs at the Lunquist

Lindsay Bourgeois

Daniela Castanotto-01
City of Hope

Daniela Castanotto

Stephen Cheung

Stephen Cheung


Juan Espinoza

Bioscience LA

Stephanie Hsieh


Monica Jain

The Lundquist Institute

Rubayath Mohsen

Lan Nguyen Headshot
WuXi Biologics

Lan Nguyen

Mug Shot(D090730R): Dr. Rashmi Shetgiri(MD, Medical Staff).
Los Angeles County Department of Public Health

Rashmi Shetgiri

Kwame Ulmer_Headshot
MedTech Color

Kwame Ulmer

UCLA Technology Development Group

Mark Wisniewski

Howard Xu_Headshot
California State University, Los Angeles

Howard Xu

Collaborate 1:1 with an expert Larta ‘Principal Advisor’ during the program. We have a team of highly experienced bioscience & healthcare focused mentors.

Our programs are led by seasoned industry experts with deep sector knowledge. Each startup is assigned a dedicated Principal Advisor to guide their journey from idea to sustainable enterprise.

Sydney Edwards
Principal Advisor

Sydney Edwards

Executive experience working with startups on product and strategy development and increasing portfolio values in the Biotech and Life Science Industry
Principal Advisor

Farahnaz Forozan

Farahnaz has a wide spectrum of expertise and experience on pharmaceutical, biotech, diagnostics, clinical trials, and more, working at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Genzyme, and LapCorp.
Principal Advisor

Lisa Geller

With a distinguished career as a seasoned intellectual property expert, Lisa has served as the Head of Intellectual Property for multiple leading companies, bringing a wealth of strategic vision and legal acumen to safeguarding intellectual assets. Her renowned expertise in IP related to life sciences industry has proven very beneficial in supporting bioscience startups.
Principal Advisor

Sunil Maulik

Sunil has held management positions at Pangea Systems, Tripos (NASDAQ:TRPS), Hoffmann-La Roche (NYSE: ROCHE), Oxford Molecular (LSE: OXMOL), and IntelliGenetics.
Principal Advisor

Min-Yi Shih

Min-Yi is a a multi-faceted technologist and an experienced business executive with key knowledge focuses on non-dilutive funding, R&D, defense, and medical equipment.
LeAnne C. Tourtellotte-01
Principal Advisor

LeAnne C. Tourtellotte

CEO and Co-Founder of JL Biosciences, experience in IP management, business development, strartup management, and commercializing technology in startups
Principal Advisor

Kwame Ulmer

Kwame Ulmer brings 20+ years of experience evaluating medical technologies in the government and serving in senior operating roles at medical device companies.
Principal Advisor

Xiao-Wei Zhu

Xiao-Wei is a Commercialization Advisor for SBIR grantee companies with phase I and phase II awards from NSF, NIST, NIH, and DOE, help awardees build business models with optimal financial structure and establish market positions through effective go-to-market strategies.
Principal Advisor

Olga Yermolenko

Olga advises family office clients on social impact and venture investment opportunities and has diligenced over $450m worth of deals.
Principal Advisor

Rachel Costello

Rachel led project management and business development for Tesla’s Energy Products Team.

Our accelerator program begins in April 2024.
Apply now to join the cohort in Los Angeles.

Tell us about your idea & vision — and our team will be in touch with next steps & more info.

Learn more about our Heal.LA Initiative

Improving the health & wellness of Los Angeles County and beyond.

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Sign up for our newsletter!

Stay up to date on all things Heal.LA with our monthly Heal.LA Newsletter. This newsletter includes program activities, such as upcoming events and ways to support our Fellows along with Fellow features and highlights and keeping up with our Alumni.


General Questions

Our program runs for 9 months starting in April, 2024 – December, 2024. All sessions will be hosted virtually but each participating idea should be tested in either Los Angeles or Miami.

This program is open to established startups with traction as well as early-stage concepts who would like to test their idea. Your innovation could be a nonprofit model, a hybrid or a traditional business model. You can be based anywhere, but during the program will test your product in at least one underserved community in Los Angeles or Miami.

We are looking for ideas that are solving a climate change related problem and can be scaled to other urban environments. We welcome applications from any field, sector, or industry that can have an impact on climate change resilience in urban settings. It could be in the categories of water, air, energy, sustainable cities, food security but we welcome applications outside those areas as well. You do not need to be a “tech company” to be considered.

The program is free for all accepted innovations. Ideas must go through an application process to be eligible for this program. We do not take equity in participating concepts.

Participating ideas agree to test their concepts in either Miami or Los Angeles for the 9-month period between April, 2024 – December, 2024.

Each week consists of up to 1.5 hours of facilitated sessions plus assignments, office hours, accountability groups, and occasional workshops. Like anything, you get out what you put in. This program is specifically designed to allow you to focus on running the day to day operations of your business, while layering in support where needed to help you meet key milestones.

Your idea can be very early stage and still a concept, although it will be helpful to have at least a minimal viable product (MVP) with some early signs of engagement. The majority of ideas selected for Larta’s programs are live with their product or service, but exceptions can be made for promising products/founders.

Larta Institute is a non-profit accelerating entrepreneurship and innovation for a sustainable planet. Since 1993, we have helped over 4,500 startups translate their ideas into sustainable enterprises – our alumni have raised over $7 billion in funds. Learn more about Larta here

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About Larta Institute

Each year, we select over 500 founders and ventures to join our startup accelerators. We provide innovators with access to our programs, ecosystem, and funding, which all play a vital role in supporting the development and implementation of their solutions.

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