Educating the next generation to solve complex health problems through design thinking
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JeffSolves 2017

JeffSolves 2017

Two teams. Two goals. One interdisciplinary vision.

Owl Medical: Turn-Timer

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The Pressure Ulcer team is one of two teams in the Thomas Jefferson University design program, JeffSolves. They are made up of four members. One industrial design student from Philadelphia University, Adam Hecht, and three rising second year medical students from Thomas Jefferson University's Sidney Kimmel Medical College: Daniel Choi, Mark Keroles, and Vinayak Rajendran. At the start of the program in January 2017, the team spent weeks speaking with healthcare professionals and administrators to find out what healthcare related problems were in need of solutions. Among the many healthcare problems they learned about, hospital acquired pressure ulcers stood out because of their high morbidity and cost.

The Pressure Ulcer team spent the remainder of the 2017 academic year researching all aspects of pressure ulcers; eventually focusing on both the biomechanical factors and hospital workflow causes of pressure ulcers. The Pressure Ulcer team then did a six-week intensive immersive residency with a product development company called 10xBeta in Brooklyn, New York. During the residency the Pressure Ulcer team developed a retrofittable bed-mounted system that uses low cost sensors to detect patient position in bed, and assess the need for a healthcare professional to turn a patient. This system utilizes intuitive notification and information delivery methods to streamline healthcare professionals pressure ulcer prevention workflows and involve patients’ families in the prevention processes. The Pressure Ulcer team continues to develop this pressure ulcer prevention product and has filed for patents.

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ALAFLEX Design: 3D Bandaging System

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Through the JeffSolves MedTECH 2017 immersive accelerator program, a collaboration between JeffDESIGN and 10XBeta, student inventors researched and developed innovative healthcare products and medical devices. The Wound Care interdisciplinary team comprises four members: one industrial design graduate student, Haru Jang; and three second year medical students of Sidney Kimmel Medical College: Victor Hsue, Leena Ramani, and Abhishek Umashankar. During the JeffSolves NYC residency at New Lab, the Wound Care team focused on addressing the needs of patients suffering from axillary Hidradenitis Suppurativa (HS).

Although the HS patient population has been trending steadily upwards into the millions each year, nothing exists to bandage the axilla (under arm area) in a secure, effective, and painless manner. HS patients are forced to buy inadequate products, leading to a decrease in quality of care at significant monetary cost. Debilitating fear of pain, drainage, and odor hinders these patient users from comfortably living independent lives. Through user experience research and expert testimonies, the team discovered that women's sanitary napkin products provide similar coverage and a relatable market model.

Introducing the ALAFLEX system, a new way of bandaging tricky axillary wounds. Medical dressings have always been flat and formulaic. However, with 3D technology, the team designed a bandaging system that ergonomically fits the axilla's unique body contour. Our 3D bandages provide leak and odor protection, while offering comfort and discretion. While the ALAFLEX is primarily geared towards treating HS patients, users suffering from hyperhidrosis and other axillary wounds and conditions would also benefit from this affordable option. With a patent pending on the ALAFLEX product line, the team looks forward to enabling patient users and providing them with the peace of mind they deserve.

ALAFLEX Design Website

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