Our mission: to accelerate the development of promising ideas of care professionals into market ready products or services embraced by all involved stakeholders

Thousands of health care professionals are working in health care institutions, fully dedicated to providing high quality health care. During their work, they regularly come up with ideas ‘for making health care better ’.

Innovative professionals who want to realize their ideas in their own hospital or beyond will experience that the innovation process in hospitals is full of pitfalls and traps. There are many stakeholders that need to be involved and persuaded to get their commitment for changing attitude and working methods. Implementation of innovations in hospitals is challenging and fails in many cases due to focus on the new (technical) product or treatment and a lack of attention for the professional environment in which the innovation has to be rolled out and implemented.


PontesNL is independent national program founded by Luuk Evers of Pontes Medical (formerly UMC Utrecht) and Joep Welschen of stichting MedtechPartners. Luuk developed with his team the Pontes method and was able during the past 16 years to get more than 10 successful innovative products to the market from scratch (starting from a researcher or care professional with a first idea). Within PontesNL the Pontes method is combined with the 16 years experience of stichting MedtechPartners to speed up the innovation process for Dutch medtech and digital health innovations. Pontes means ‘bridges’ and that’s what innovation needs: we bridge the gaps between stakeholders who need to be involved in order to develop and implement innovations successfully.

tesNL offers tailormade solution support

PontesNL - our services for hospitals

services to hospitalsWe see the following questions in hospitals:

  • How do we implement the desired/required healthcare transition?
  • How can we best innovate based on the clinical need?
  • How can we improve the internal innovation infrastructure?
  • What innovation do we bring in from outside?
  • Which new innovations will we develop ourselves?
  • Which good ideas are we going to link to initiatives elsewhere?
  • How can we implement and roll out innovations faster?
  • How can we collaborate with market parties? What can you offer each other and what can you ask of each other?

To enable innovation, hospitals should support the innovative professionals and scientists with an innovation infrastructure containing a method with clear project steps and easy access to all stakeholders that need to be involved.
Hospitals or care organizations are invited to become a member of PontesNL and as a ‘Pontes house’ start building the innovation infrastructure and learning the Pontes methodology by using our:

  • 5 hours per month custom 1:1 support
  • Access to our network, formats and tools 

PontesNL - our services for innovation teams

Services to innovation teamsWe see the following support questions within innovation teams:

  • Is my innovation idea feasible?
  • How do you test the clinical need?
  • Which stakeholders are involved and what is their importance and influence?
  • How do you formulate the value proposition?
  • How do you get stakeholders involved in your project?
  • How do you work with market parties as an innovation team in a hospital or how do you work with a hospital as a startup?
  • How do you set up a pilot in such a way that it is implemented immediately if it is successful?
  • How do you scale up after the first successful implementation?


Our added value for innovation teams:

  • Thanks to our experience with the entire process and knowledge of the substantive innovation process (the Pontes method), we can support teams in smart prioritization. What do you need to do today to create value over the next 2 weeks?
  • We know all the relevant programs, accelerators and incubators and, together with the teams, we can determine exactly what makes sense and when.
  • We engage selected, qualified experts at the right time (we have a pool of qualified experts from all required disciplines).
  • We have access to hospitals for pilots and usability studies.
  • We understand the problems faced by startups and entrepreneurs.
  • We focus on realizing the plans with a hands-on approach.


Our services for innovation teams:

  • Structurally, an expert sparring partner is available for 5 hours of custom support per month who works according to the proven PontesNL method.
  • Connection to all existing regional and national programs.
  • Access to a qualified expert pool (from IP to electronics and from MDR to design, but also business and investment readiness specialists)
  • Connection to our investor pool (from angels to VCs)
  • Access to hospitals for validation and pilots
  • Access to the PontesNL toolkit with standard formats for IP, collaboration, licensing, etc.

The Pontes method

Based on our experience in hospitals and startups we oversee the entire project as from first idea until implementation in hospitals. We know how to involve the right expertise at the right time and give access to our network. We strongly advise to integrate all actions that are key for success as from start. For example: start thinking about the requirements and needs of all stakeholders that can influence implementation in a very early stage.  

The Pontes method


Current innovation teams we support

Innovation teams that we supported in 2023:

Slam OrthoAutomatic measurement during drilling to improve treatment of fractures

Micro-CosmosThe Micro-Cosmos dome offers a secure environment for patients


We support the finalists of the yearly STZ innovation challenge. Last year we supported:

  • MedGezel - the student as medical coach for patients



  • Achter de V(oo)rdeur - a VR training for care givers for recognition of elder abuse


Achter de voordeur

  • Oognetwerk Zorg in Zicht - reducing the queue time for eye doctors via using the skills of optometrists


Zorg in Zicht

  • Rad2Share - the safe use of medical images for education purposes




PontesNL - meet the Pontes houses



Spaarne Gasthuis


Logo Isala


UMC Utrecht


Spaarne Gasthuis

Mindy Asamoah

Mindy Asamoah

PontesNL has supported Spaarne Labs in the development of the internal innovation process. The result is a more effective workflow from idea to experiment. In 1:1 sessions it's great to have PontesNL as a sparring partner for all kind of innovation challenges. During the monthly innovation managers meeting it's fun and valuable to share experiences and knowledge with the innovation managers of the other Pontes houses. 


Accelerating health innovations


Want to know more? Please contact:

Luuk Evers   Joep Welschen
Luuk Evers   Joep Welschen
M +31 6 - 19 21 66 89
M +31 6 - 21 53 37 93