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Product Design students work alongside leading healthcare institutions in Design Sprint Challenge

Over 140 first and second-year BSc (Hons) Product Design students took part in an intensive five-day design sprint challenge.

design sprint
The Design team at FutureNova providing feedback to students during the Sprint

Working alongside three large healthcare institutions; UCLPartners, Anglia Ruskin Institute and the NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Training Programme, they were asked to fulfil a live brief for client, FutureNova. As an award-winning plastic fabrication company, FutureNova supply medical grade cases for iPhones and iPad, designed for use in a hospital environment.

Design Sprint methodology involves a five-day intensive process for rapidly solving big challenges, creating new products, or improving existing ones. It compresses potentially months of work into a few days.

The task set by FutureNova was to consider the challenges faced by healthcare professionals and clinicians during their day to day activities of reporting, referring, collating and referencing data, defining a solution to solve the opportunities identified.

Students were asked to fully present back their recommendations before further developing their solution as a fully defined design, ready for manufacture.

Second year BSc (Hons) Product Design students went on to do further work on the project after the five-day design sprint, developing their ideas into CAD models as well as producing marketing and technical packs and a process document.

The high standard of the submissions was praised by all industry partners and many honourable mentions were announced alongside the winning designs from students Tom Beaumont and Oscar Robinson.

Tom developed ‘Cradle’ – aiming to improve the efficiency of data recorded for nurses working in neonatal transition wards, through a non-invasive method of vital data collection – a low-cost smart mattress topper designed to fit existing NHS cots.

Oscar designed an ‘express check-in’ machine – aiming to reduce A&E waiting times by giving patients a QR wristband. The QR link allows patients to fill out their details, connecting to an algorithm which prioritises the triage process.

Lauren Rushen, Product Design Lead at FutureNova, said: "The Sprint resulted in some very innovative prototypes from the groups – ranging from voice dictation devices, UV sterilisation systems, mattresses measuring patient vitals, waiting room check in systems and blood carrying devices.

"It’s been great to have continuous involvement as the second year students developed their group concepts into individualised projects. The quality of sketching, CAD, rendering and DFM consideration has been very impressive.

"I’d like to thank Karen Winfield for all her hard work in making this project a success! We would love to be involved in Sprint projects with NTU in the future."

Elias Zapantis, Technology Evaluation Lead, UCLPartners added: “We help health innovators with the best ideas to get their products adopted by the NHS. It was great to support the next generation of innovators to understand the health ecosystem, learn about value proposition, and use their skills to design new technologies to address clinical challenges. I look forward to seeing where their skills take them next.”

The School was delighted to have an opportunity for the research team to be linked to the supporting healthcare bodies and clients, building relationships to further partnerships in the future.

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