February 17, 2023

Vita Dx, a triple win health system, and an impact unicorn?

Vita Dx, a triple win health system, and an impact unicorn?

At the Universités de l'Economie de Demain in Rennes, 3 future impact unicorns were revealed: 3 companies from Brittany and the Greater West of France spearheading the economy of tomorrow. The Tech for Good France community's goal is to bring these nuggets to the forefront throughout France. This approach is accompanied by a vast study conducted with BCG to identify and accelerate these impactful unicorns.

Discover the portrait and testimonial of Allan Rodriguez, founder and CEO of Vita Dx.

Introduce us to Vita Dx

Vita DX is a start-up created in 2015 between Rennes and Paris that allows to diagnose certain types of cancer, especially bladder cancer, via an analysis of collected cells without invasive medical operation thanks to image processing by artificial intelligence.  

Today, in case of suspicion of bladder cancer, the screening method is long, costly and uncomfortable: it involves two doctors and two medical analyses, one of which is invasive, cystoscopy. However, the latter could be avoided in 85% of cases if the first cytology was analyzed with other tools.  

With Vita DX, it is estimated that the number of cystoscopies can be divided by 2. This is a beneficial loop both for patients who do not have an invasive procedure, for physicians who gain time to focus on higher value-added tasks, and also for the health system with avoided costs.  

Vita DX now covers the entire French territory and we can receive samples from all over France. Our technology allows us to deploy on other types of cancer such as thyroid for example. Our main objective is to process the maximum number of samples because this is where we have a positive impact on the entire medical chain.  

What does corporate sobriety mean to you?

Vita DX is by nature a lean economy company because we propose to reduce costs by doing better with less. Doing better means increasing the accuracy and reliability of cancer screening tests, all with less medical time, less public money and less pain for the patient.  

On the simulation of avoided costs, we have a triple contribution!

My main motivation is to improve the health system, I wouldn't have minded having a relatively polluting solution, but this is not the case, quite the contrary: my teams have become prescribers of sobriety by developing an artificial intelligence solution that consumes very little energy.  

From an AI point of view, we are positioning ourselves on machine learning rather than deep learning, which is much more energy-intensive. This is also the choice of sobriety, but above all a choice guided by the specifications of health professionals and the HAS (Haute Autorité de la Santé) because it allows for better traceability of the data and of the AI treatment process.  

What do unicorns inspire you?

The question of the unicorn does not arise at all for Vita DX, we operate in the health sector and our main customer is the public system, it is not in this context that we will reach the billion valuation.  

In fact, my positioning is to have a healthy economic model, which allows me to generate economic value for my stakeholders, first and foremost my employees, while being really useful to our customers and to society as a whole.  

The narrative on the unicorn is very present and very effective, it has helped to propel an image of these companies that impact the daily lives of millions of French people. What is regrettable is that most of them do not have a directly positive impact on society. In this respect, we can object to the examples of Doctolib or Ynsect, which respond to a need of general interest. These are models towards which we could collectively aim: the scaling up of companies that have a core business with positive impact.  

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