CHOC nurses join pediatric “Hack-a-thon”

Hacking and pediatric healthcare might be an unlikely pairing – but a recent event combined the two, drawing a range of multidisciplinary experts, including six CHOC Children’s nurses, together to create disruptive solutions for pediatric and neonatal healthcare.

Clinicians, physicians, engineers, data scientists, designers and entrepreneurs gathered at the three-day “Hack-a-thon,” hosted by MIT Hacking Medicine and the Innovation Institute at the Innovation Center in Newport Beach, to develop tech solutions and fast-track development of value-driven concepts.  

The CHOC Nursing Research and Innovation Council helped to facilitate nurse involvement in this event, held Feb. 7 to 9. Six nurses actively participated on separate interdisciplinary teams: Donna Bigani, Erin Rentch, Pernilla Fridolfsson, Kylie Castro, Wanda Rodriguez and Jennifer Hayakawa.

The team led by Kylie won second place and $750 for their innovation related to improving the care of patients with autism spectrum disorder.

“The process was nerve-wracking and very tiring, but at the end of the weekend it was completely worth it and an amazing learning experience,” Kylie said. “It was so interesting stepping into another world, learning to speak another language – or what felt like another language – and being pushed outside my comfort zone.”

Several CHOC specialists as well as other staff also participated in the event.

Learn more about nursing research at CHOC Children’s.