For the more than 400 million people living with a rare disease worldwide, the journey towards diagnosis is often a challenging process. Even after receiving a diagnosis, treatment options are minimal with only 5% of rare diseases having an approved treatment. Because of this significant barrier, Horizon Therapeutics partnered with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Solve program in 2021 to create an annual challenge, The Horizon Prize. The Horizon Prize brings together innovators and entrepreneurs to create solutions to challenging problems that empower, educate and inspire the rare disease community.
This year’s challenge poses a unique question to entrepreneurs and innovators to solve a problem that so many face, “How can we improve the quality of life of people who have been diagnosed with a rare disease?” The challenge seeks solutions that optimize holistic care for people with rare diseases; support daily care management for patients and/or their care partners; mitigate barriers to accessing medical care after diagnosis, which disproportionately affect disinvested communities and historically underrepresented identity groups; enhance coordination of care and strengthen data sharing; empower patients with quality information to fight stigma; and promote community and connection among rare disease patients and their advocates.
In 2022, a total of $150,000 in prize funding will be awarded for up to two solution teams selected from a network of thousands of innovators and researchers. Meet this year’s five finalists to learn more about their solutions to improve the lives of those in the rare disease community.