Student Poster

Promoting Medical Innovation by Bridging the Gap Between Engineers and Future Physicians

Log in to view the attachment.
Medical Technology

The problems facing healthcare today require interdisciplinary approaches. Recognizing this, the Dell Medical School, the Cockrell School of Engineering, and the Texas Center for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Disease at UT Health Austin launched the Clinical Innovation and Design Program (CID). The CID fellows, a mixture of medical students and graduate level engineers, explore clinical needs and develop a solution as a team over the course of 10 months. The CID program educates students on the proper process of needs identification and solution development. The program is organized into four phases: clinical immersion, needs selection, prototyping and testing, and planning a path forward. The clinical immersion period is 8 weeks of shadowing the multidisciplinary pediatric cardiology team in order to identify clinical needs. The 5 person team recorded over 400 areas of improvement through observing physicians, nurses, lab technicians, sonographers, patients, and families. The immersion period takes place in a variety of environments including the operating room, cardiac critical care unit, electrophysiology clinic, catheterization lab, sonography clinic, and general pediatric cardiology clinic. The needs selection phase utilizes literature reviews, stakeholder interviews, and analysis of existing solutions in order to select a single need to pursue. Once the project focus is selected, the team begins to ideate solutions and create prototypes. After months of ideating and creating incremental improvements, the last phase is initiated. Planning the path forward involved utilization of the University of Texas office of Commercialization and Texas Innovation Center. After this 10 month program, the team is placing the final touches on a provisional patent, licensing our product’s name, and forming a registered company to attend funding competitions. This program allows a supportive space to develop skills and learn from experts. There were over 50 interviews completed with stakeholders and industry experts in the development of a product. The CID program gives future innovators valuable insight into design thinking, intellectual property, and regulatory affairs. Most importantly it creates an interprofessional partnership between two fields in order to promote creative and effective medical technology solutions.