A group of prominent judges, including investors, technologists, funders, and successful entrepreneurs, selected College of Visual and Performing Arts School of Design students Quinn King (left) and Alec Gillinder (right) as winners of the prestigious ACC InVenture Prize at Syracuse University. The senior industrial and interaction design students won the award for an invention developed by MedUX, a medical product design and research firm they founded to create innovative solutions for inpatient, at home, and mobile care. Their first invention, a lightweight, wearable, portable IV system will allow patients to receive intravenous treatment quickly and efficiently while still keeping them mobile. It is very useful in hospital settings, stand-alone infusion centers, and home palliative care where a patient might need intravenous delivery and wants to be mobile.
They initially conceived the concept and first prototype in Invent@SU, where they won first place in summer 2018. Over this academic year, they further developed the product and business model working with the Blackstone LaunchPad powered by Techstars at Syracuse University Libraries, along with mentors and industry experts. After being selected “SU’s top innovators” in the campus competition, they will now be competing against student teams from other ACC member institutions, “Shark Tank,” style in the finals of the 4th annual ACC Inventure Prize Competition April 16-17 in Raleigh, North Carolina.
“Medical products are often only designed for function and lack the consideration for the users’ needs,” says King. “The medical field is always evolving, and there is a need for better designed and considered products. Our company is flipping the approach of how to consider medical healthcare design.”
“Healthcare needs to consider patients as customers,” adds Gillinder. “Patients want mobility, more personal control, and health care providers want more innovative solutions.”
The team hopes to put their UX perspective as design students to work designing develop a line of products that are considerate of the user, ergonomics, and effective function. “We will be delivering products to our target market that help solve user needs,” says King. “Our company will accomplish this through extensive customer discovery with medical staff and patients to understand the problem and devise optimal solutions.”
The team is pursuing milestones that include completing patent work, and seeking strategic partners. They are already working with top experts and inventors in the medical device field on piloting their concept. They are also being mentored by other experts, including VPA alumnus Gianfranco Zaccai, co-founder of Continuum, who is a design pioneer who is known for championing a holistic and highly integrated approach to innovation research, design, and development.