Kiss My App Contest for Healthcare Innovations
Cheeky title, but a serious purpose – a crowdsourcing contest garners innovative mobile apps to benefit patient care.
William Osler Health System, Canada
The amusingly titled "Kiss My App" contest is a crowdsourcing initiative organized by the William Osler Health System, a large community hospital in Ontario. The student only crowdsourcing contest is a search for new ideas for mobile apps that will make positive changes in healthcare. Students work alone or in teams and the inaugural contest in 2013 drew a huge nationwide audience.
The first round of submissions involved the development of written proposals, and from these, Osler drew up a shortlist of the top five ideas. The finalists then moved forward to design, develop and test their innovative concepts.
Fully functioning apps were submitted to a review panel of Osler staff and community members and they selected as their grand prize winner, a hospital navigation app called HosNav. It was developed by Atinderpal Singh Multani, a student from Athabasca University.
The software program makes going to the hospital much less confusing for the many people who find it an overwhelming experience. Among its helpful tools are hospital maps, parking information, a visitor navigation tool and a diagnostic appointment tracker. For his creative endeavors, Atinder received a check for $10,000.
The mobile app is available from Apple iTunes and has been downloaded hundreds of times.
"We have been completely blown away by the ingenuity and out-of-the box thinking demonstrated by our student teams, and the creativity in how they have presented their ideas throughout this competition," said Matthew Anderson, Osler President and CEO.
Such was the success of the contest that Osler launched another crowd-based app challenge in 2014. This time round the format was a 48-hour hackathon. High school, undergrad and graduate students from all over Canada flocked to the auditorium at Brampton Civic Hospital for an intense burst of creativity. They brought their sleeping bags, blankets, snacks, laptops, phones, monitors and ideas.
Fourteen teams participated and the result of their feverish intellectual activity was that nine managed to submit a viable app within the short time period. The winner was Outpatient, created by a team from the University of Toronto.
This Android app aims to lower patient re-admissions to the hospital’s Emergency Department. Outpatient provides an interactive digital experience and features reminders of medications and appointments as well as task lists based on the hospital's discharge plans. The winning team was presented with a check for $10,000.
According to the contest's organizers, one of the benefits of working with student innovators is their fresh approach to innovation, being able to look at things differently from those who have been in the field for a long time.
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