Everlywell is a home lab-testing startup that aims to make healthcare less opaque and complex. (Everlywell)

Everlywell is a winner of Fierce Healthcare's Fierce 15 awards. See our other honorees here

When Julia Cheek founded the home lab-testing startup Everlywell, she was shut down for funding multiple times. But Cheek learned from the defeats and even scored a $1 million deal during a 2017 appearance on the popular TV show “Shark Tank.”

Now Everlywell is growing as a home and wellness company that offers more than 30 at-home lab testing kits for food sensitivity, fertility, STDs, thyroid function, metabolism, vitamin D and inflammation.

The results are reviewed at a lab and can be broken down in an easily digestible format.

Cheek said that the goal of the company is to help consumers navigate a complex system.

Fierce Insights from Julia Cheek, CEO and founder of Everlywell

What is your best piece of advice for launching a healthcare company that challenges the status quo?

Be inspired by problems. Always ask yourself: What’s wrong with this? What could be better?

The healthcare system is notoriously confusing and opaque, and lab testing is one of the worst offenders. Having to deal with surprise bills while navigating the complex healthcare system as a consumer inspired me to find a better way.

Everlywell founder and
CEO Julia Cheek

What is the failure you’ve learned the best lesson from?

In the early days of Everlywell, I was rejected for funding dozens of times. I learned not to take it personally. Change is the foundation of innovation, and not everyone likes change.

Today, Everlywell has helped hundreds of thousands of people better understand their health by offering a more convenient, affordable way to get lab testing done. If I had listened to everyone who told me “no” in the beginning, I wouldn’t be here today.

What is your prediction for the healthcare industry in 2020?

Healthcare costs will remain frustratingly high and complex, but people's expectations for straightforward prices and affordable options will increase.