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Clinicians

Clinician involvement

Engineering Innovation in Health (EIH) promotes interdisciplinary collaborations between engineers and a wide range of clinicians with the goal of developing technical solutions to pressing challenges in health care.

We invite any health care professional to submit an unmet health challenge. Previous EIH projects have involved more than 100 clinicians, with diverse training and specialties, including medical doctors, surgeons, nurses, physical therapists, dentists, pharmacists, and pathologists.

Involvement

Submitting your unmet need

The EIH process starts with submitting an unmet health challenge and ultimately ends with a working prototype solution, which can take the form of a device, process, or application.

It takes only a few minutes to submit your initial unmet challenge via the Clinical Project Application. The applications asks you to describe the unmet health challenge, how the challenge is currently addressed, and your vision for how the project might move forward.

Selection process

In late summer (August/September), EIH invites a select group of submissions to give a reverse pitch, describing their unmet needs to our selection committee. The projects that the committee selects move forward in the first phase (October-December) that focuses on deep and holistic understanding of the unmet health challenge.

We often receive more than 50 submissions each year. Typically 10 to 15 projects are invited to participate in the autumn quarter class, and 6 to 8 projects move forward during winter and spring quarters for full development.

Time commitment

The submitting clinician (or team of clinicians) will form a team with engineering students and faculty. Autumn quarter requires roughly 1 to 3 hours per week of clinician time plus attendance at the Fall Showcase in December. If your project is selected for full development during winter and spring quarters (January–June) the time commitment will increase marginally.

There are no direct costs to the participating clinicians; however, we always welcome direct support to the program from individuals, departments, and industry.

 

Submit a health challenge

 

Benefits

Prototype solution and intellectual property

If your project is selected for full development, you will receive the solution to your health challenge in the form of a working prototype (device, process, app) in June. You and your team will submit the invention to CoMotion for further consideration for a U.S. patent application. A large percentage of EIH projects have pursued patent applications.

Preliminary data and comprehensive report

You will receive a comprehensive report that covers the background of the unmet need, the existing approaches and technologies that address the challenge, the regulatory pathway, preliminary market opportunity, and background intellectual property, as well as several solution designs and their preliminary data.

Future opportunities

The solution and report provides an abundance of opportunities to move the project forward:

  • Submit a patent for the innovation.
  • Use the report information and preliminary data gathered for subsequent publications and grant applications.
  • Evaluate the innovative solution in the clinic (with appropriate IRB and FDA considerations).
  • Begin the process of spinning out a start-up company.

Sample projects

For a full list of previous projects, visit the Projects section.

CathAlign: Automatic Pressure Transducer Leveling »

Treatment decisions in Critical Care are made based on readings from external transducers that are manually leveled (by eye or by leveler) to the phlebostatic axis. A clinician may level the external transducer 2-3x per hour based on patient activity or questionable readings. CathAlign combines a novel sensing solution with ehanced transducer attachement safety features to improve nursing workflow and reduce avoidable hospital errors.

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MindMend: »

Chronic headache and migraine are frequent, severe neurological conditions that reduce quality of life. There are no highly effective pharmacologic interventions and those that are used have a substantial side effect profile. Headache focused biofeedback may be an effective intervention, but treatment is expensive and is currently only available at specialized facilities such as Seattle Children’s. Creating headache-focused biofeedback that is more accessible would allow patients to manage their headaches more effectively and reduce the cost and time associated with treatment at a center.

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Beta Watch »

Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) is a lifelong illness that requires careful management of blood glucose levels and lifestyle choices. This illness especially impacts young adults, who need to learn to manage their illness while learning to take on independence and responsibility during their transition to adulthood. Beta Watch's solution addresses the need for a way for young adults recently diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) to help manage and monitor their symptoms to reduce the stress and burden caused by T1D. Their solution is a medical storage accessory that can be attached to a mobile phone. The Beta Watch case will safely and discretely house all the daily essentials that a T1D patient needs. This solution is paired with mobile application recommendations to raise awareness of existing tools that will help T1D patients manage their illness.

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