You are merakoi

Over 95% of the world’s population has health problems.1 One in three adults worldwide live with multiple chronic conditions.2

merakoi means co-creating a better future, for us all.

1. ScienceDaily, 2015
2. WEForum, 2017

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Truly patient-led healthcare that's better for everyone

Patients are the only reason healthcare companies exist. So why, so often, are patients the people least involved in creating solutions to improve their own lives?

The internet brought revolution. Patients were empowered to share their stories globally, to build communities to support one another and solve their unmet needs.

But there’s still a vast gap between these real-life patient experiences and healthcare systems.

Healthcare companies want to become more patient-led but they struggle to integrate the voices that matter. Patients want healthcare that better meets their needs’ but they’re often excluded from developing the solutions that would help them.


That’s what merakoi is changing.

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Meraki [Greek]
Doing something with so much love, devotion, or creativity you leave a piece of your soul in it.

Key Online Influencer. Our patient experts are passionate advocates within their disease community, influencing the lives of patients every day.

The merakoi family

We’re a tight-knit virtual global team of dedicated, talented people with a clear
mission: to co-create healthcare solutions that help people better navigate life with a disease.

As well as our ‘corekois’ – scroll to learn more about us – we work with a vibrant
team of flexible workers and consultants who share our vision and values.
Together we make up the merakoi jigsaw – and we’re all an essential piece of the puzzle.

Our patient experts, the driving force

Our patient experts combine disease-specific personal experience with specialist professional experience that’s applicable to healthcare product development and marketing.

Our curated, highly-engaged network has hundreds of patient experts covering 17 countries and 59 disease areas – and is growing constantly (our network doubled year-on-year for the past three years.)

100% of our patient experts are living with a chronic disease, either as a patient or a caregiver.

Learn more about becoming a patient expert.

Talk to us about collaborating with patient experts on your project.

The management team

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Kevin Michels-Kim

CEO and Co-Founder

The Go-Getter

For Kevin, the idea behind merakoi was born many years before we were founded in 2016.
As a digital health strategist with more than 20 years'experience, Kevin saw daily how healthcare companies of all sizes sought better collaboration with patients - but also how they constantly struggled to bring patients into the conversation.

When a project saw him recruiting patient bloggers and leaders in multiple sclerosis to his team, he knew working alongside patient experts to co-create better healthcare solutions would be the DNA of merakoi. Now, as CEO, Kevin's responsible for setting the long-term vision of merakoi - and translating that vision into continuous actions that drive progress. He's laser-focussed on growth - for merakoi, himself, and the people around him.
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Silja Chouquet

Strategic Partnerships and Co-Founder

The Trailblazer

merakoi came from a profoundly personal place for Silja. On one hand, she was working in strategic planning for one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies. On the other, she was supporting her husband through a turbulent health journey with many years of frustration, disappointment, and misdiagnosis.

Silja knew first-hand what an invaluable resource people in online disease communities could be. She also knew first-hand that healthcare companies desperately wanted to integrate patients but didn't know how. merakoi was born to bridge the gap. Now, as Head of Strategic Partnerships, Silja is responsible for striking new partnerships that broaden our impact globally. When she's not trailblazing at work, you'll find her hiking off-the-grid with her kids, husband, and dog.
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Christoph Rumpf


The Economist

A business economist and certified internal auditor with impressive financial credentials and an even more impressive track record, merakoi was originally one of Christoph's clients before he joined us.

As Partner of the fiduciary company we worked with, Christoph became increasingly involved with day-to-day life at merakoi as we grew.

We got to know one another, and Christoph's extremely tolerant, open-minded, positive and supportive attitude made him a natural addition to the merakoi family (and an extremely valuable one).
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Maria Grazia Ticca

Head of Engagement

The Glue

With a decade's experience in client- and customer-facing roles in pharma and a background in life sciences marketing, Maria brings a deep knowledge of the industry and the people in it - but that's not what makes her perfect for merakoi.

What makes her perfect is she's an extremely caring, compassionate, and genuine soul who thrives on connection. She embodies the human-centric, people-led ethos of merakoi, working closely with our patient experts to ensure projects are a positive experience for everyone involved.

Our community is strengthening and growing every day: that's thanks to Maria.
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Pedro Santos

Head of Operations and Products

The Scrutiniser

Many years' experience as a project and product manager in technology and healthcare has taught Pedro to think on his feet and wear many hats. (Well, and a previous career as a sound engineer, musical curator, and artist manager. That helped too...) Those qualities serve him well at merakoi, where he handles client project delivery, product releases, and recruitment.

He's responsible for embedding the right structure and processes to support our mission and continued growth, within the non-hierarchical structure that's central to our culture.

We put patients first, nobody else. Pedro helps us do that.
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Helen Hey

Business Strategy Director

The Connector

Helen's career background has been very varied - from studying nursing and working with the elderly through to pharmaceutical sales, clinical research, marketing, and communications - but has always involved working closely with people in the healthcare space.
Helen's perfect for merakoi because she completely embodies our value of practising kindness. She knows that innovation and courageousness only come from empathetic listening.

As our Business Strategy Director, she leads our commercial strategy and business development, as well as marketing. In everything Helen does, she's driven to make a true difference to people?s lives, both to our team and the people we serve.

The values we live by

Our values aren’t just something we say. They’re the pillars of merakoi – we
wouldn’t exist without them. They’re at the core of everything we do: the clients we
work with, the projects we work on, and most important, how we work with patient experts.

They’re at the core of how we grow too. Using the ROSE (Return on Society and
Environment) framework to set strategic objectives, we measure success in terms of social impact.

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Practice kindness

Empathy and compassion are at the heart of merakoi. We act with calmness, integrity, and patience – especially at times of pressure.

Flexibility is central too. We co-create working arrangements that work for everyone, accommodating our patient experts’ unique needs, pressures, and priorities.

Embrace curiousity

merakoi was founded from urgent curiosity, from a pioneering drive to create a better way of developing healthcare solutions that make a true difference for patients.

This curious mindset permeates our every action. We embrace new ideas and are excited to respectfully hear diverse perspectives. We
strive to learn constantly, to better serve the people around us.

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Create together

Truly creating together is what sets merakoi apart. We work without hierarchy. Our team, healthcare companies, and our patient experts collaborate with radical trust, transparency, and equality to develop, design, and build healthcare solutions that have a profound impact for patients worldwide.

We believe in the power of many diverse voices, given the space, respect and trust to thrive.

Innovate courageously

It takes courage to be bold. It takes courage to be truly visionary and truly creative It takes courage to embrace a business model that
goes against the grain of what?s been done before.

We’re not afraid to experiment and fail – we’re urged on by our vision for a radically more effective, more sustainable healthcare ecosystem founded on collective experience.

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Talk to us

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Get in touch to learn more about our ethos, and explore how we could help your company become part of the patient-led future for healthcare.