The OHT Strategy
One HealthTech (OHT) had aimed to host its first annual conference in June 2020, which also aimed to act as the community’s major fundraiser. Things were looking good until....COVID hit!
Instead, OHT decided to run a collaborative spring clean exercise across over 30 volunteers who came to support which has now evolved into our two-year strategy.
Our volunteers were organised into ‘Squads’ which represented key areas of development including Impact, Decision-making & Governance, Campaigns, Hub Growth and Development, and Equality, Diversity & Inclusion.
These teams, alongside their day jobs, worked throughout the summer of 2020, running survey, devising frameworks, talking strategy and implementation plans and importantly, having the full remit to build on and tear apart OHT’s existing work to date. And this strategy is what we’ve come up with!
Who is this strategy for?
This strategy aims to lay out OHT’s focus areas for 2021-2022.
This document is for:
Volunteers within the OHT community to challenge themselves to grow, develop and align existing activities with the organisation’s overarching strategy
Strategic partners and sponsors who wish to support OHT and our mission
Who are One HealthTech?
One HealthTech (OHT) is a grassroots, volunteer-led, global community that exists to support and promote better equality, diversity, inclusion and accessibility in the health innovation sector.
OHT has been in existence for over four years and since then, the community has evolved to a network of over 14,000 members, led by over 100 volunteers, spread across 15 Hubs, increasingly across the world.
Through the community’s actions, countless doors have been opened, minds have been inspired, jobs have been filled and people have been helped, supported and welcomed.
We are for anyone who feels the world of healthtech and health innovation isn’t open and welcoming to them. In order to be for everyone, we need to target the needs of specific groups who are traditionally underrepresented and under-served in health innovation.
This varies across international geographies, but our communities tend to support specific groups, particularly: women, ethnic minorities, those from the LGBTQ+ community, those with disabilities or those from unconventional educational, professional or economic backgrounds.
We primarily exist for our community members, but employers, policymakers and wider ecosystems in healthtech benefit from the activities, insights and strength of the OHT community.
We’d also love to think we touch those working in healthtech, who have not taken notice of any diversity and inclusions considerations to date.
The mission of OHT is to empower local grassroots communities of health innovators to thrive by inspiring, celebrating, enabling and championing diversity in healthtech.
Our vision is that innovation in health, care and life science is representative, effective, accessible and vibrant.
Equality, diversity, inclusion and accessibility (EDIA) is at the core of our mission.
We know a breadth of opinion, ideas, backgrounds and perspectives shapes better strategies, technologies and teams. We also really recognise the need for diversity in how to think about and tackle diversity challenges and think that informal, grassroots networks are a great way to create this groundswell and bottom-up solution.
Whilst we have some core principles by which we view EDIA, we realised quickly that the definitions of “under-represented groups” do not translate well across many geographies and sub-sectors.
As a result, OHT is about supporting individuals, communities and organisations to consider their diversity and culture, and take actions to improve it.
What are we?
OHT is slightly unusual in its structure.
As a network in the healthtech space, we try as much as possible not to be a centralised, hierachical organisation.
We are a federated community which means we are made up of Hubs. Hubs are defined geographical regions, curated and coordinated by a local team of volunteers.
OHT as an organisation in turn sees itself as a platform on which anyone can build an inclusive-by-design healthtech community.
We want to be:
At the forefront of meaningful and impactful inclusion in health innovation.
Outward-facing and collaborative, keen to work with others in partnership to embed our work in existing initiatives, as well as the global content.
Warm and joy-filled whilst credible and expert in our tone and culture.
A sum our parts: federated in our structure and decision-making, and agile and responsive to changes within the community.
Independent and neutral, yet financially stable.
What do we want to achieve?
Overarchingly, we want to achieve better representation of skills, backgrounds, demographics and perspectives in health innovation in order to deliver better products, services, care and solutions to improve health and wellbeing.
We know, like every industry, healthcare and life sciences is changing enormously, and becoming increasingly dependent on technology. This is a great thing, but is not without its challenges.
We believe that innovating in health, care and life sciences should be accessible to everyone.
We also believe in the power of human networks and communities to drive change, and that every voice should be heard so that technology can positively impact all.
We look to address everything from inclusive design, compassionate leadership and biased algorithms, to supporting more under-represented groups to develop the skills they need to drive the next generation of health.
By promoting openness, inclusion, kindness and diversity, everyone benefits from the best innovations.
Because, as an organisation, we focus more on supporting individuals and communities to deliver the change they need, we can’t be too prescriptive on types of activities or numbers. i.e. we don’t want to say “there needs to be X number of women on Boards by X date”.
We hope that OHT will be an important cog in the machinery of transforming healthcare for the better
Why do we care?
When healthtech isn’t inclusive, solutions do not cater to, and are not representative of the very populations they aim to serve.
This is affected by the environments in which ideas are generated, who designs and decides them, and how actions are taken. The outcome? Users, patients and citizens’ health suffers.
We think OHT is best placed to fill this gap because:
How change happens?
Change (within OHT’s control) happens from:
Ensuring OHT is generating and cultivating best practice amongst the volunteer and member community in order to lead by examples.
Highlighting, addressing and finding solutions to particular challenges of equality, diversity, inclusion and accessibility in healthtech.
Supporting EDIA by creating an effective, inspirational, resilient and impactful environment that means anyone feels health innovation is open and accessible to them via the OHT community.
Broadly, change to the diversity of the health innovation sector can come from:
A positive, supportive, inclusive and diverse ecosystem.
Government initiatives and policies that prioritise organisations, institutions and people leading by examples, and setting the standard for good practice.
Employers supporting their employees by promoting them, investing in their development and ensuring their policies and practices are fit for purpose.
Individuals feeling empowered to take positive individual action or as part of a collective.
Influencing those not engaged by collecting evidence, inspiring and and demonstrating where health innovation benefits/suffers from better/poorer inclusion.
How does OHT effect change?
Our ‘enablers’ to achieve change are:
Local communities, based in defined geography that look to build longer-term, close and supportive sub-networks.
At a global level: our vision is to grow and foster a diverse group of active Hubs.
At a local level: OHT Hubs should welcome, grow and foster a diverse group of people who are interested in healthtech, and facilitate learning and knowledge exchange from others in a local region, cutting across existing communities and network silos.
Importantly, we want inter-Hub collaboration. OHT Hubs should support new Hubs to set up and be as good as they can be by learning from one another.
Campaigns are a collection of activities (which can be made up of events, workshops, templates, research, initiatives, profiles etc) that are based on achievement of a specific outcome (tangibly related to the OHT mission) within a pre-defined time and reaches these goals that it has set out to meet.
Campaigns enter the community via:
The OHT strategic teams (in line with strategic priorities) i.e the core EDIA mission
The OHT community put forward a campaign e.g. a concern or topic that is identified by a specific hub
Commercial partners who request co-development on a specific topic e.g. a topic that a company needs help in exploring
In response to contemporary issues e.g. a new piece of legislation is being consulted on
Partners and followers of OHT content who take small actions, think differently, behave differently, as a result of something they see/read/experience from OHT.
Individuals who interface with OHT and are inspired and activated to drive real change, either within their organisation and communities or within OHT. An activated individual may join a Campaign, start a Hub, create a networking group in their organisation, write a blog or share their story.
Some of the existing assets and activites that can be used by our enablers include:
Local events and meetups
A community-wide newsletter
Popular social media accounts
A jobs board
Heroes (aka Mentorship)
Campaigns like Humans of HealthTech
Volunteering for OHT