Empowering Innovation that Helps the World SMILE

SMILE Health is the program where transformational solutions to improve oral health take center stage.

Despite the mounting evidence that shows integrating oral health into one’s overall health is vital to quality outcomes, gaps across the healthcare ecosystem prevent this integration.

Bridging these gaps not only helps improve people’s lives, but also makes good business sense.

The opportunity is there, and time is now:

  • <100 dental investments in 2022 (compared to >4,000 in health care) (Edgemont Partners)
  • >$250MM average deal size for early-stage oral health startups (Pitchbook data)
  • US dental market expenditures estimated to grow to $196 billion by 2027 (Pitchbook data)

Now, investors, payers, providers, and other health care leaders have an accelerated pathway to impact and value. Join us.

Contact Us to Participate

What Is SMILE Health?

CareQuest Innovation Partners and MATTER have joined together to launch the third annual SMILE Health accelerator program.

The 12-week semi-virtual program connects diverse founders with a network of industry partners and investors who help advance their solutions and business roadmaps.

However, startups aren’t the only organizations that benefit from this first-of-its kind program.

SMILE Health partners receive:

  • Access to a curated set of vetted solutions and emerging use cases to drive health equity, accessibility, and/or integration
  • Insight into the latest trends in oral and integrated health innovation
  • Validation study framework and data & analytics support
  • Extensive network of strategic partners and potential co-investors
  • Opportunities to strengthen positioning in ecosystem through unique marketing and event opportunities, including HLTH 2024
  • Continued access to community and resources after the program, including support to continue to advance mission-aligned projects.

Focus Areas

The 2024 SMILE Health accelerator program will focus on three primary areas of oral health innovation.

Advancing Accessible, Equitable, and Integrated Health

How can we make health care, including oral health, more accessible, equitable and/or integrated?

Reducing Disparities through Oral Health

How can we leverage innovative oral health solutions to better identify and/or address health disparities?

Connecting Chronic Care with Oral Health

How can we help people at risk or with chronic conditions better manage their overall health through oral health?

Lee Shapiro
Managing Partner

“SMILE Health highlights the importance of oral health care innovation, which is often overlooked in considering the “whole” health of a person. Programs like SMILE Health de-risk investment in health care startups by validating solutions in a real-world environment, opening the door to investors eager to drive meaningful change in the health care industry.”

Our Industry Partners & Investors

Industry partners collaborate with startups on validation studies by providing access to insights, networking, and additional resources. Investors stay engaged throughout SMILE Health, including mentorship and participation in Reveal and Demo Days.

This is a unique opportunity to join an extensive network of leaders eager to engage with innovations that break down barriers and work to make better health possible for everyone.

About CareQuest Innovation Partners

CareQuest Innovation Partners validates and scales transformative solutions to improve overall health through oral health. Together, with our ecosystem of leading industry partners, startups, and investors we make care more accessible, equitable, and integrated. Joined by the shared mission to improve the oral health of all, CareQuest Innovation Partners is the for-profit subsidiary of CareQuest Institute.


At MATTER, we believe collaboration is the best way to improve healthcare. The MATTER collaborative includes more than 900 current and alumni startups from around the world, working together with dozens of hospitals and health systems, universities and industry-leading companies to build the future of healthcare. Together we are accelerating innovation, advancing care, and improving lives. For more information, visit matter.health and follow @MATTERhealth.

Together we can empower innovation that helps the world SMILE