Welcome to Season 3 episode 2 of the KnowStroke Podcast.
In this episode we sat down for a stimulating conversation with Sandra Saldana, CEO and co-founder at Alva Health. Sandra launched Alva Health as a spin out from Yale University entrepreneur fellowship program in 2017. Alva Health's mission is to develop, commercialize, and make accessible a first-in-class medical device that accurately detects strokes using patient-worn wearables. 2021 was a milestone year for Alva Health as they were selected as the winners of the Medtech Innovator accelerator program - the industry's global competition and accelerator for early and mid-stage medical device, diagnostic, and digital health companies. The device is shown below and looks like a livestrong band which is meant to be worn 24/7 - currently it detects hemiparesis which is a common biomarker of stroke. The more a user wears the device, the more it learns about the movement of that specific user. For any irregularities the device will alert the patient and notify 911. In the future they will be iterating on the product to incorporate speech and facial recognition technology.
Born in Monterrey, Mexico, she moved to the US at 12 years old and grew up in Houston, Texas. Sandra's father ran a successful business so from a young age she remembers having the itch to start her own company one day. She began her studies at Cornell University in upstate New York and then moved back to Houston to study a PhD in Cancer Biology. After a few years in academia Sandra made the move into industry and had her first taste of the med-device / pharma industry while running sales for a start-up in Boston.
After a few years of the C-Suite she was eager to start her own company. Not long after being accepted to Yale's MBA in healthcare program she met her co-founders and being validating a concept for a wearable to detect stroke. It was a long journey, one that she explains in detail in this episode and speaks to the hurdles along the way.
Sandra has a true understand of what is wrong with the current stroke care pathway, this will become evident when you hear her answer to our Magic Wand question. Alva Health will be launching clinical trials in the second half of 2022. We encourage you to reach out and get involved! See links below if you'd like to learn more and get in contact with Sandra or the team.
Alva Health - https://www.alva-health.com
Reach out to Alva Health - https://www.alva-health.com/cover-page-1
Twitter - https://twitter.com/alvahealth
LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/company/alvahealth/
Watch the YouTube Videocast with Sandra here : https://youtu.be/s49Pvj9Nd2Y
Episode 3 is going to be a special one as we welcome back our good friend and stroke THRIVER Caroline Goggin alongside her husband Travis.
We also wouldn't be able to get these episodes churned out so quickly without our great podcast producer Jake Dansereau. Thank you Jake!
Music Credit and Podcast Production by Jake Dansereau, connect at JAKEEZo on Soundcloud @user-257386777
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