People Innovation Excellence

Health Systems


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Multidisciplinary problem-solving
One unique aspect of IIE’s Society for health Systems, which sponsors the conference, is that it caters to all types of healthcare improvement professionals, not just IEs. This diversity of membership provides great opportunities to collaborate and solve problems together form different perspectives.

Hassan Abbas, a sophomore nursing student at the University of Michigan, was one new contract. A group of student from the University of Michigan attended and won an honorable mention in the YouTube Competition, where student produced videos aimed at increasing the interest in pursuing health systems engineering as a career. Abbas found out about the conference through the Center for Healthcare Engineering and Patient Safety at the University of Michigan. Amy Cohn, associate director of the center shared more details about the center.

The center was started a few years ago to focus on translating research into practice – moving research from “bench to bedside”. The center brings together students from a variety of disciplines, such as public health , nursing, medicine and engineering. The student do hands-on work in the healthcare environment and solve real-world problems.

Another great aspect about this center is that it gives engineers the chance to apply their skills to healthcare, an industry ripe with opportunities for application of these skillsets. Imagine the impact that exposure to these tools is having on the students who come from disciplines outside of engineering. Now, nurse will graduate knowing that the tools exist, and they also will have used the tools to make real-life improvements in healthcare. The impact for the engineers is that they are solving real problems and expanding their thinking to healthcare applications.

Clearly, there are a lot of benefits to multidisciplinary problem-solving, and it is exciting to see that happening on college campuses in addition to the workplace. The students are better prepared for the work environment, and healthcare benefits from their application sooner, that’s win-win.

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