Ten teams gathered in The Hub in Glasgow’s Pacific Quay. Their objective: create innovative solutions to tackle the city’s health challenges. The prize was £20,000, to be split equally between the members of the winning team.
The teams had from Friday evening to Sunday evening to work on their ideas and create a presentation to convince the judges of their idea’s merit. Read on for a run-down of the pitches and the winners of Glasgow’s 3rd Hackathon!
The winning team wowed the judges with a working prototype of a smart pedometer to encourage young people to improve their health and get involved in Glasgow’s spaces. A number of studies and public reports show that young people are increasingly inactive. Redlines aims to help them get active by providing a very simple way of rewarding activity. This would including introducing ‘achievements’ for completing goals set by the system, the user, and other users, thus introducing competition between peers. Redlines is also looking for feasible and tangible rewards that could be offered to individual users to encourage participation such as discounted memberships or merchandise.
Awright PAL (Personalised Assisted Living)
The team focused on helping patients during the early stages of dementia. They explained, using OPEN Glasgow datasets on mental health, that one third of people are at risk of dementia. A series of sensors in the patient’s home would track movements and habits. It would build a picture of the patient’s routine and assist in such things as reminding people to take medication. Asked to demonstrate their unique selling point, the team argued that the system could be retrofitted into existing homes or built into new homes.
The online platform aims to help patients manage their conditions and to give them greater control over how their data is used. GPs would be able to refer patients to an app with more information about their illness. The team was confident that a slick and user-friendly platform would make it an attractive proposition to get the cooperation of GPs and practitioners.
The dreamscape provides a space to relax, play and create a sensory immersion experience within a user’s mind. It aims to tackle a variety of mental health issues in Glasgow, such as anxiety and depression. Together with people in session you will embark on a collaborative journey. The team pointed out that this technology had shown to assist in the treatment of dementia and chronic pain.
The judges asked how they would get through to potential users given the stigma attached to mental health issues, particularly in males. While this was a concern, the team viewed the idea as a community project and an artistic endeavour with therapeutic benefits.
The idea aims to give “The Glasgow Effect” a positive meaning with a community incentive scheme to improve health by creating league tables and competition. Judges pressed the team on the logistics of this online incentive scheme, given that worst off areas in terms of public health are also the least likely to have access to digital means. The judges also raised the issue that many of these worst off areas are already being pushed for improvements anyway.
Health Walks Plus
The idea builds on Glasgow’s successful Health Walks campaign and directs residents to nearby walks with physical markers on pavements. The accompanying app uses the OPEN Glasgow datasets and invites users to create new walks. The user interaction and the social entreprise ethos are key to the pitch.
The interface lets patients view their medical records and summaries of past consultations. The team argued that patients’ limited understanding of consultations was a problem and providing them with more information could help them improve their health. The judges were concerned about the amount of extra work but the team was confident that the system would be extremely easy and quick to use and update.
The app and add-on to smartphones analyses a patient’s skin and alerts the user to the risk of bedsores. The system uses existing technology and would be relatively simple to implement. It could be altered to scan patients for signs of skin cancer or other ailments that show symptoms on the skin. The judges asked how it would actually save NHS money.
The system provides A&E visitors with an estimated waiting time. The information would improve patients’ experience. Answering judges’ concerns about the extra workload for doctors and nurses, the team pointed out that the system could be implemented in existing software with no extra work for staff.
The idea would see the creation of a social enterprise and a network of people with specific knowledge about areas of healthcare thereby empowering communities. Despite being unsuccessful on the night, people in the audience showed interest in the idea after the ceremony was over. This demonstrates the high quality of the pitches, where losing teams can still garner a lot of curiosity from interested parties.
It was another brilliant effort by all the teams, and a great success all round. The 4th Future Hack will be held in May, and will ask teams to turn their minds to the theme of Transport.