What was it like? 2013 UChicago App Challenge Finalists discuss their apps and experiences


Dr. David Beiser,

Assistant Professor of Medicine, 

Emergency Medicine,

Chicago Medicine 

Dr. Beiser is an Assistant Professor in the Section of Emergency Medicine at the University of Chicago.  Prior to medical school, he identified as an engineer, working in the medical device industry and later pursuing graduate training in biomedical engineering at Northwestern University.  For the past several years, he has been an NIH-funded researcher in cardiovascular science.  This fall, he joined the D4Lab Innovation Fellows program at the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship.  It was there that that he met his teammates Claire O'Grady, Leah Brodsky, and Priya Raja over a common interest in improving the emergency department discharge process.  Dr. Reginald Saint-Hilaire was then recruited from the U of C Emergency Medicine Residency for his interest and expertise in patient literacy.  After a kick-off meeting, the team decided that this problem would be best approached through a human-centered design process rather than traditional clinical research methods and thus HealthSpotr was born.

Harnessing Mobile Technology to Improve Emergency Department Patient Outcomes

Patient discharge can be a hectic and disorganized process-- information addressing a range of medical and social needs must be delivered by physicians who are strapped for time and resources. At the end of a visit, a patient is given a generic sheet of information that summarizes their follow-up care options. This information is ineffectively communicated and is often overlooked and thrown away.  The HealthSpotr team met during the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship's D4Lab program where they applied human-centered design techniques to address problems in healthcare.  In this talk, team members Dr. David Beiser and Claire O'Grady will discuss the process of concept generation, concept selection, design, prototyping, and user testing applied during the development of HealthSpotr.  A brief app demo and discussion of lessons learned will follow.


Tao Sun, 

Senior Research Specialist,

Biological Sciences Division,

Surgery, Surgical Research,

University of Chicago

Tao Sun graduated from Illinois Institute of Technology and now working as a Senior Research Specialist in the Department of Surgery, University of Chicago. Over his research career, he has 16 research articles and reviews are published in renowned peer-reviewed journals that have worldwide circulation. Based on his research experience, he knows how important the lab protocols are in doing experiments, so he has built a video protocol website which is designed to allow researchers to easily learn and share lab protocols via hosted videos since 2011. Now, he has repackaged the video protocols website into a user-friendly, mobile application, which will make researchers’ lives even easier. 

Innovating the Learning & Sharing of Lab Protocols

As a medical scientist in the Department of Surgery, Tao knows how important lab protocols are. His app aims to providea better platform for research communities to learn and share experiment methods in an interactive and compelling video format. The mission of his app is to educate and empower researchers to make their next big breakthroughs faster.