Startups are lean, nimble, and innovative. Large established organizations tend to be slow to change and the process of making a decision can take a painfully long time to work its way through all the required channels. As a result, it is newsworthy that the American Medical Association (AMA) — an old and large organization — has invested $15 million to help launch a new for-profit venture.

This new company is Health20147, and it is designed from the ground up to bring new technology and ideas to fruition. The website describes it as an “innovation studio” made up of “pirates hired by the Navy.” Clearly, the leaders view their role as advocates for disruptive products and services that are in a position to transform healthcare in the U.S. They take a multi-disciplinary approach, involving experts from a broad range of design and research disciplines. They also set an aggressively fast pace for projects; 30 days to validate the potential offered by a project, then 60 days more to bring the winners to the prototype stage, ready to hand off for commercialization.

As might be expected from a program co-founded by the AMA, Health20147 leans heavily on the physician’s perspective, relying on them for suggestions for projects, testing the prototypes, and providing feedback. The company hopes to have a major impact on healthcare in this country within the next 30 years (which is why the year 2047 is a prominent part of its name). Technology advances are moving more rapidly than perhaps at any time in the past, and it may be that a lean, nimble, and innovative company like this will be able to make a significant difference.