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Carle community among Health Maker Lab finalists

Carle community among Health Maker Lab finalists
Out of numerous Carle Illinois College of Medicine Health Maker Lab submissions, 20 innovative makers (finalists) will each have two minutes to pitch their great idea to improve human health. You can cheer them on as they do.

The Health Make-a-Thon event takes place Saturday, March 28 from 4 – 7 p.m. at University of Illinois’ Foellinger Auditorium, 709 S. Mathews Ave., Urbana. The event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments provided. Free parking is available around campus on the weekend.

“This competition generates some incredible ideas from the brightest minds. It’s refreshing to see new faces, hear new voices and offer new perspectives. It fosters and supports anyone with an idea to make healthcare better for all,” said Jennifer Eardley, PhD, Carle’s vice president of Research.

In a friendly “dolphin tank” style event – think Shark Tank meets Mister Rogers – finalists will pitch their great idea to a panel of expert judges.

“These incredible ideas have the power to change the face of medicine, better human health, and leave a lasting impact,” said Marty Burke, associate dean for research at the Carle Illinois.

The Health Maker Lab supports building innovative healthcare solutions from diverse perspectives across the state of Illinois and two of Carle’s finest are among them.

Brian Beeman, MD, FACS, Carle Heart & Vascular Institute, and Omobolawa Kukoyi, MD, Carle Emergency Department, join other finalists for a chance to win $10,000 in making resources to make their idea a reality.

Dr. Beeman’s idea – a robot assistant for transcarotid artery revascularization, or TCAR, procedures – spawned from work he’s conducting in partnership with the University of Illinois Bioengineering department.

“There’s no place else in the world that can do what we’re doing – combine the forces of world-class vascular physicians and top-notch engineers to address solutions to vascular problems,” Dr. Beeman said.

Dr. Beeman said physicians provide valuable input when creating and advancing medical devices. And it helps him learn new skills too.

“It’s fascinating to me – all of technological advances in minimally invasive surgery. I want to be a part of it, the planning, the discussion, the software coding and the programming,” Dr. Beeman said. “We need to develop new skills today so we aren’t left behind.”

Carle has completed more than 50 TCARs with remarkable success but there’s always room to improve.

“Our idea takes the latest third generation vascular surgical procedure for carotid stenosis and brings it into the 21st century with robotics. This will not only make it safer for patients but for providers too.”

Using technology to make healthcare safer for patients is what inspired Dr. Kukoyi as well.

She and a group of fellow innovators will pitch a Low-cost, Portable Non-invasive Positive Pressure Ventilation Device.

Meet the other citizen scientists by visiting the event page and exploring Meet the Finalists.

The judges are entrepreneurs, innovators, scholars, healthcare providers and community members.

But, event attendee feedback weighs in too. Fuel this high-energy event through input and do your part in fostering a better healthcare future.

In its second year, the Health Make-a-Thon secured submissions from 16 counties througout Illinois. Carle Illinois will announce ten winners at the event and award each $10,000 in resources to help advance and develop the winning ideas.

“With the resources from the Health Maker Lab and the drive and dedication of the citizen-scientists, there is no limit to how far these ideas will go,” Burke said.

Categories: Redefining Healthcare

Tags: Carle Illinois College of Medicine, Health Make-a-Thon, Health Maker Lab, Innovation, Research