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Novonate Awarded $25,000 at Prestigious Pediatric Medical Device Competition

Novonate is recognized for their impactful and innovative work by the National Capital Consortium for Pediatric Device Innovation.


South San Francisco, CA • October 10, 2019

From L to R are: Anthony Sandler, M.D., senior vice president and surgeon-in-chief, Joseph E. Robert, Jr., Center for Surgical Care, Children’s National Hospital; Eric Chehab, Ph.D., CEO, Novonate; Kolaleh Eskandanian, Ph.D., vice president and chief innovation officer, Children’s National Hospital; Paul Grand, founder and CEO, MedTech Innovator. Photo credit: KulbakoPhoto

Novonate was awarded $25,000 in grant funding during the “Make Your Medical Device Pitch for Kids!” competition, held during the 7th Annual Pediatric Device Innovation Symposium hosted by Children’s National Hospital, Sept. 22 in Boston, Massachusetts. Sponsored by the National Capital Consortium for Pediatric Device Innovation (NCC-PDI), one of five grant programs funded by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to address unmet needs for pediatric medical devices, the competition focused exclusively on medical devices designed to improve Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) care. With nearly 400,000 babies, about 1 in 10, born prematurely in the United States annually, the FDA identifies this specialized pediatric market among those that significantly lag in medical device development.

Eric Chehab, co-founder and CEO of Novonate, represented the Novonate team in Boston and presented LifeBubble to a panel of over 20 judges. "We were incredibly excited to join this NICU-focused event that recognized the tremendous need to improve neonatal care. We're honored to be recognized as one of top innovators in the space and can't wait to join the NCC-PDI family," said Eric.

As one of six competition winners, Novonate also gains access to the first-of-its-kind NCC-PDI “Pediatric Device Innovator Accelerator Program,” led by MedTech Innovator, a prestigious showcase and accelerator program with a proven track record of identifying early-stage medical device companies with the key characteristics required for commercial success and accelerating their growth through its vast ecosystem of resources. MedTech Innovator is providing winners with virtual in-depth, customized mentorship from some of the industry's leading executives and investors.

Awarding a total of $150,000 in grant funding to the winners, NCC-PDI is led by the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation at Children’s National Hospital and the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland. Last year, NCC-PDI added new accelerators BioHealth Innovationand MedTech Innovator and design firm partner, Archimedic.

“We’re proud to welcome Novonate to NCC-PDI’s portfolio of companies as one of our 2019 pitch competition winners. The judges were impressed by their ability to identify and respond to clinical challenges in the NICU with an innovative solution that will improve outcomes and give hope to families whose babies require critical care,” says Kolaleh Eskandanian, Ph.D., MBA, PMP, vice president and chief innovation officer at Children’s National and principal investigator of NCC-PDI. “This marks the beginning of our relationship as we look forward to helping them accelerate commercialization so that LifeBubble can benefit neonates everywhere as soon as possible.”

With a goal of advancing the development of pediatric medical devices, this was NCC-PDI’s ninth competition in six years. All winning innovators receive mentorship and support through NCC-PDI’s network of experts, consisting of medtech executives, investors, specialty pediatricians and FDA regulatory and business consultants. To date, the consortium has supported nearly 100 pediatric medical devices and helped five companies receive FDA or CE mark regulatory clearance.

The additional five winners are:

  • AlgometRx, Inc., Washington, D.C. – The AlgometRx Rapid Drug Test is used to detect and monitor neonatal abstinence syndrome, allowing for earlier assessment and intervention of opioid withdrawal to reduce physiological stress.

  • Epitel, Salt Lake City, Utah – Epilog is an inexpensive, discrete and disposable EEG machine that provides real-time monitoring to revolutionize the way neonates suspected of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy are managed at community hospitals.

  • PyrAmes Inc., Cupertino, Calif. – Noninvasive and wireless, the Boppli Band allows for risk- and pain-free continuous blood pressure monitoring for neonates.

  • Raydiant Oximetry, Mountain View, Calif. – Raydiant Oximetry Sensing Systems is a novel, non-invasive technology that more accurately detects fetal distress during labor and delivery, reducing medically unnecessary cesarean deliveries and the occurrence of newborns suffering the consequences of metabolic acidosis.

  • Rhaeos, Inc., Evanston, Ill. – FlowSense is a wearable device that enables noninvasive monitoring of ventricular shunt function in patients who have hydrocephalus, obviating the need for imaging and unnecessary hospital visits and admissions.


Novonate Inc. is a medical device company dedicated to designing products that improve neonatal care. LifeBubble, the first device developed by Novonate, protects and stabilizes the umbilical catheter in neonates, and standardizes the process of stabilization for healthcare providers. The company is based in South San Francisco, California. For more information, visit

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