How Y Combinator Is Helping Combat COVID-19

By Amit Chowdhry ● March 27, 2020
  • Startup accelerator program Y Combinator is now fast-tracking funding for companies that are focused on combating the coronavirus pandemic.

Startup accelerator program Y Combinator is now fast-tracking funding for companies that are focused on combating the coronavirus pandemic.

“In order to confront the COVID-19 crisis, we need to immediately mobilize global scientific and technical talent. We have refreshed our Request for Startups, which are concepts we believe are important in the coming decades, to reflect this newest addition: Responding to COVID-19,” wrote Y Combinator in a blog post. “We will fast-track a handful of promising COVID-19 startups through our application process and fund them immediately. More information at ycombinator.com/rfs#covid.”

Y Combinator wants to invest in startups that are working on tests/diagnostics, treatments and vaccines, equipment for hospitals, and monitor and data infrastructure.

There are over 25 YC bio and healthcare companies that are helping with the COVID-19 crisis. The list includes Unima, Synkrino Biotherapeutics, BillionToOne, YourChoice Therapeutics, Atomwise, Memora Health, Opentrons, Bot MD, CareRev, Medinas Health, Flexport, CareMessage, Ginkgo Bioworks, Curebase, Circle Medical, and Patchd Medical.

Former Y Combinator President Sam Altman is also personally trying to fund startups/projects that are helping with COVID-19. Altman is interested in funding startups that are product ventilators or masks/gowns quickly, screening existing drugs for effectiveness, and novel approaches to vaccines.