Home > Ho Chi Minh City students to improve healthcare problem in the first Health Innovation Challenge.

Ho Chi Minh City students to improve healthcare problem in the first Health Innovation Challenge.


48-Hour Health Innovation Challenge gathers more than 50 innovators in Ho Chi Minh City to generate solutions for improving healthcare problems

On November 25 – 26, 2017, The Partnership for Health Advancement in Vietnam (HAIVN) and the Ho Chi Minh City University of Medicine and Pharmacy (HUMP) jointly hosted Vietnam’s first student Health Innovation Challenge. This event is one activity of Improving Access, Curriculum, and Teaching in Medical Education and Emerging Diseases (IMPACT-MED) Alliance, supported by USAID.  This year’s event focused on the problem of antimicrobial resistance.

Antimicrobial resistance is a growing public health threat around the world.  In Vietnam, the number of drug resistant infections are on the rise; caused, in part, by excessive and inappropriate antibiotic use in the health care system, in farm and livestock production and in communities.

This 48-hour Innovation Challenge brought together students from different disciplines, including medicine, engineering, humanities, business, and design, to develop innovative solutions to complex health care problems utilizing a team-based and interdisciplinary approach.

More than 50 selected students from universities around Ho Chi Minh City gathered at the HUMP campus to collaboratively identify challenges, propose answers and work on creative solutions to address the growing problem of antimicrobial resistance. The students were supported by 18 mentors from a variety of backgrounds including medicine, IT, research, and business.

Three winning teams were selected based on a final pitch of the problem they want to address and the proposed solution. The 1st place team presented the concept of a mobile game application that helps to enhance public awareness of antibiotic resistance in Cho Ray hospital. They received $500 in cash, a working space at the USAID-supported Maker Innovation Space, and ongoing mentorship to help them to further develop their proposed solution. The 2nd place team suggested a mobile application that could track antibiotic usage and the 3rd place team proposed a smart device to control antibiotic use in livestock.

"We are excited to see the outcomes of the first ever Health Innovation Challenge in Vietnam. It was a great opportunity to bring students from different disciplines together to explore new solutions to one of the most pressing challenges in healthcare today" states Dr. Todd Pollack, Country Director of HAIVN.

Representatives from HUMP, Arizona State University, and GE Healthcare were invited to judge the presentations, providing an opportunity for the students to showcase their work. Representatives from MIT Hacking Medicine and the International Society for Infectious Diseases were on-site to help run the event.  Sponsorship was provided by Shorelight Education and GE Healthcare. The winner of the Innovation Challenge was announced at the closing ceremony of the inaugural Vietnam National Medical Education Conference on December 2-3, 2017 in Ho Chi Minh City.

The IMPACT MED Alliance, supported by USAID, is a Global Development Alliance bringing together a diverse group of universities, public and private sector partners.  The project goal is to build a strong and effective health workforce in Vietnam able to respond to 21st century priorities and to contribute to the health resilience and health security of the country.

The Partnership for Health Advancement in Vietnam (HAIVN) is a collaboration between Harvard Medical School (HMS), Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) dedicated to improving health outcomes in Vietnam. Our team includes experts in clinical medicine, medical education, health systems, healthcare quality improvement, monitoring and evaluation, and implementation research. HAIVN has been working to improve the Vietnamese health system since 2003. Please visit http://haivn.org/home or follow https://www.facebook.com/haivnoffice/ for more information.

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is the lead U.S. Government agency that works to end extreme global poverty and enable resilient societies to realize their potential. Following 50 years of improving lives through development and humanitarian assistance, USAID is the principal U.S. Government development agency partnering with countries throughout the world to promote peace, prosperity, and security. Please visitwww.usaid.govor follow https://www.facebook.com/USAID/ for more information.

GE Healthcare is the $18 billion healthcare business of GE which harnesses data and analytics across hardware, software and biotech, (NYSE: GE). As a leading provider of medical imaging equipment, with a track record of more than 100 years in the industry and more than 50,000 employees across 100 countries, we transform healthcare by delivering better outcomes for providers and patients.

Shorelight Education is reinventing the international education experience for both students and universities. In partnership with leading U.S. institutions, we build innovative degree programs—whether on campus or cloud-based, in the U.S. or students’ home countries—that help students thrive and create a new generation of successful, globally minded alumni. 

Arizona State University (ASU) is the largest public university by enrollment in the U.S. and has been ranked three consecutive years as No. 1 by U.S. News & World Report among the Most Innovative Schools in America. ASU has been actively involved in the modernization of Vietnam’s STEM higher education through the Higher Engineering Education Alliance Program (HEEAP), which was founded in 2010 as a collaborative partnership between ASU, USAID, and Intel. In 2015 a third investment between USAID, ASU and industry partners was made under the Building University Industry Learning and Development through Innovation and Technology (BUILD-IT) Alliance. Based on the pillars of institutional policy, quality, curriculum, faculty innovation and technology, BUILD-IT leverages diverse government, industry, and academic partners to link STEM instruction in Vietnamese higher education institutions to the needs and capabilities of industry partners in order to produce graduates who lead inclusive, technology-based growth across the country. For more information please visit: https://builditvietnam.org and https://heeap.org.