Hackathon for Health

Guest post by Keiran Letwin

The end of September 2018 marked the first health and regenerative medicine-themed hackathon in Victoria, a competitive event where interdisciplinary teams were called to tackle pending healthcare challenges from the local community.

Hosted by UVic’s Centre for Biomedical Research, B.C. Regenerative Medicine Initiative, Starfish Medical, and Island Health, this event fell nothing short of impressive—ticking off every box from unique, practical, and inclusive.  

Hackers were presented with challenges and given one month to formulate solutions, then a 24-hr crunch period at Fort Tectoria to prepare their final presentations for judging.

The highly involved challenges encompassed molecular, robotics, social, ethical, and communications fields. A call to develop a drug-releasing microsphere sieve, terminal devices for protheses, an on-agitating restraint device for patients with dementia, a fall-detection monitor, and an updated paging system for nurses working with sexual assault victims.

Community involvement was at the heart of the hackathon, providing its unique edge, and ultimately, the range and complexity of the solutions drafted. Challenges were practical in an attempt to meet pressing needs in Victoria, and participation was open to the public, as either a hacker, mentor, judge, or challenger.

UVic BioMed Beat – @UVicCBR – And the Victoria Health Hackathon has started 

It is by no surprise that this facilitation of diversity was the perfect platform for such exceptional ideas that are now under consideration for use by their esteemed challengers.

Conglomerations such as these are consistent with trends in STEM innovation, and awareness within our local community through participation will have profound, lasting effects as Victoria continues to uphold its new-found reputation as a tech-hub. 

For more information on this event, and the many innovative ongoing projects at UVic follow the links below or attend University of Victoria’s Biomedical Engineering Entrepreneurship partnership day on November 2nd, 2018.

Victoria Health Hackathon

Centre for Biomedical Research

Biomedical Engineering Entrepreneurship partnership day

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