The next time you get a blood test, you might not have to go to the doctor and watch vials of blood fill up as the precious fluid is drawn from your arm. No more wondering to yourself, "Ah, how much more can they take before I pass out?" Instead you might be able to walk into a Walgreens pharmacy for a reportedly painless finger prick that will draw just a tiny drop of blood, thanks to Elizabeth Holmes, 30, the youngest woman and third-youngest billionaire on Forbes' newly released annual ranking of the 400 richest Americans.
|Fig. Elizabeth Holmes featuring in Fortune magazine|
Revolutionizing the blood test is a golden idea. Because of new testing methods developed by Holmes' startup Theranos, that lone drop can now yield a ton of information. The company can run hundreds of tests on a drop of blood far more quickly than could be done with whole vials in the past—and it costs a lot less.
A Billion-Dollar Idea
Holmes dropped out of Stanford at 19 to found what would become Theranos after deciding that her tuition money could be better put to use by transforming healthcare.
Traditional blood testing is shockingly difficult and expensive for a tool that's used so frequently. It also hasn't changed since the 1960s. It's