Two Challenges 1.) 50% of patients who lose a limb to diabetes will lose their second within two years due to low levels of mobility. FitBionic provides top-quality prosthetics to people who have lost a limb to diabetes at a super-affordable price (see this TEDx talk).  Committed to lowering the rate of second amputations, they will be using the Scrimmage to explore how they can most effectively enable physicians to monitor their diabetic patient’s mobility levels using FitBit trackers in real time. This will ensure patients are living active lifestyles, reducing their chances of multiple amputations. 2.) An estimated 1.7 million hospital patients – 4.5 of every 100 admissions – suffer from hospital-acquired infections each year, causing or contributing to the deaths of nearly 100,000 people. Sharklet, has developed germ-resistant bandaids and catheters by mimicking shark-skin, and is using the Scrimmage to see how they can create a tipping point in hospitals to adopt their bacteria-free supplies.  With how frighteningly common hospital-acquired infections are (and with hospitals being penalized for each occurrence), having bacteria-free supplies will be an industry game-changer. Meeting the Two Challenges (and nine more) at a Scrimmage  In the true TED spirit of promoting ideas worth spreading, ReWork organizes Scrimmages, or day-long “hackathons,” to bring together people who care about making a positive social impact – and more importantly, to teach them how to apply their professional skills to real problems presented by some of the most innovative organizations in the community. The Scrimmage gathers 80-100 talented professionals and organizes them into small teams with 10-12 mission-driven organizations (like FitBionic – of which past speaker Eythor Bender is CEO – RxRevu and Children’s Hospital Orthopedics Institute). These teams are then tasked to create new solutions to challenges they’re facing in their work. A host of mentors who are experts in relevant skills and fields also join the fray to guide the creative process.   Scrimmages are designed to challenge everyone in the room to think differently about problem-solving by teaching a skill called Rapid Prototyping. The technique was developed by Tom Chi, who used it with his team at Google to create revolutionary products like Google Glass and the Self-driving Car. The idea of Rapid Prototyping is to test ideas and concepts in the real world – fast – before spending a lot of time and money to see if they work. The goal for the event is that by the end of the day, each team will have generated innovative solutions with actionable next steps for these team leaders to implement in their organizations. And instead of learning about Rapid Prototyping through lectures and reading materials, Scrimmages challenge attendees to grasp these concepts immediately by actually applying them to real problems in the community. At the end of the day, each attendee walks away with a whole new paradigm for solving problems, the thrill of experiencing what it feels like to apply their talents to meaningful problems, and valuable connections with like-minded professionals who care about making Colorado a better place. The Healthcare Scrimmage Specifically focused on health and healthcare, the upcoming Healthcare Scrimmage will be held on December 14th in Boulder at the Impact Hub. Doctors from the Children’s Hospital, local health-tech startups, and select Colorado-based non-profits will be showcasing specific challenges they are facing in their departments or businesses. No particular education or professional background is necessary to attend – just your brain, enthusiasm, and passion to make a difference in just one day! TEDxMileHigh last supported ReWork for The Rocky Mountain Scrimmage with the TEDxMileHigh Prize last fall (read more about our experience here), and we’re excited to be able to rally our community behind such a unique experience again.
In the words of Tom Chi:
“Defining a problem is an extremely creative activity. By not drawing a clear and compelling problem, you are cheating your team out of an incredible unifying and driving energy… In business a lot of other factors are at play, but design thinking, problem defining/solving and visual communication can give you a huge leg up in terms of advancing your work and your career.”
At the Healthcare Scrimmage, team members will be able to roll up their sleeves and be a part of conversations that shape the future of some of the most impact-driven companies in Colorado. For more information, or to sign up for the Scrimmage, please click here.