The word has gotten out.
Well over one-hundred creative and collaborative professionals and students from the health, tech and business worlds came together over the May 5th weekend for the third annual Hacking Health Windsor-Detroit.
There were doctors, nurses and hospital administrators as well as programmers, graphic designers, entrepreneurs and investors.
They spent the weekend dreaming up, designing and demonstrating innovative solutions to everyday health care challenges, while building business cases around their vision.
Some of the team leads drove two hours from London, Ontario. Others came from Ann Arbor, Michigan. Most were from the greater Detroit and Windsor metropolitan area.
Christopher Bricio flew in from Guadalajara, Mexico – a biomedical engineer and project leader from the local Hacking Health chapter looking to bring best practises from Windsor-Detroit back to Guadalajara as they prepare their first event.
Teams had the opportunity to pitch in front of a star-studded panel of judges that included Jacqlyn Smith from the Detroit Medical Center, Dr. Steve Bartol from Henry Ford Innovations Institute and Lindsay Aspegren a venture investor at North Coast.
“Technology entrepreneurship moves forward when tech is connected to real people with real challenges,” says Paul Riser, Managing Director of Technology Based Entrepreneurship at co-organizer TechTown Detroit. “Hacking Health does that in spades, and the solutions and startups it generates backs that up.”
Windsor-based teams showed very well.
Mandeep Bumbra – a Registered Nurse and University of Windsor Odette School MBA – took home a prize powered by the Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce and Office Depot – which includes tickets to the Detroit Policy Conference.
Bumbra’s Project LEAP focused on eradicating leprosy with the help of a mobile application.
A team led by Morgan Rosenberg, from TechAlliance in London, scored a prize sponsored by the University of Windsor Odette School of Business for his mobile application called Supports – which provides support to individuals facing mental health crises. The award includes four tickets to the renown Georgie Odette Leadership Conference 2017.
Supports also received three months of co-working space at Grand Circus.
A team of University of Windsor and St. Clair College students called MediMeals received the prize sponsored by the University of Windsor EPICentre which includes entry into the prestigious EPIC Founders accelerator program valued at $6000.
MediMeals also went home with the People’s Choice Award that included two Airtame media streaming devices courtesy of Audacia Bioscience and two Amazon Echoes powered by TechTown and WEtech.
Finally, Lisa Jacobs – who is part of the Libro StartUP accelerator program – took home Customer Validation Engagement consultation sponsored by SearchLite for her mobile application called ClinicSeeker.
“I am always amazed at how Hacking Health continues to serve as a bridge, connecting people across the tech and health care sector but also across our region and beyond”
Yvonne Pilon, President and CEO of WEtech Alliance, one of the co-founding organizations of Hacking Health Windsor Detroit.
As if to highlight the diversity of professionals at Hacking Health, the Overall Judges Prize went to the Dystexia/Stroke App – which was presented by Darnell Stewart, who is a Fire Captain with Detroit Fire Department.
Captain Stewart received entry into the Entrepreneurial Bootcamp at Ann Arbor SPARK as well as commercialization consultation with the University of Michigan Fast Forward Medical Innovation.
“Hacking Health provides WEtech clients with an opportunity to meet investors, potential clients, and other business support organization on both sides of the US-Canada border,” says Dr. Irek Kusmierczyk, Director of Partnerships at WEtech Alliance. “Right away they learn to operate with the US and Canadian markets in mind, and draw from cross-border talent and resource pools.”
Plans are already underway for Hacking Health IV – which will travel back across the Detroit River to Windsor in 2018.
Hacking Health Windsor Detroit would not be possible without the generous support from Windsor Regional Hospital, Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare, Leamington District Memorial Hospital, the Windsor Essex Economic Development Corporation and the University of Windsor as well as the Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs and the Ontario Centres of Excellence.