Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn recently hosted a first-of-its-kind event to showcase nursing innovations and inventions.
Although the Maker Faire is an annual event at the New York Hall of Science in Queens, Maimonides Mini Maker Faire was the first in the U.S. to be held at a hospital, according to organizers.
Maimonides partnered with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for funding for the event, said Tom Smith, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, senior vice president and CNO at Maimonides.
Its a wonderful event that were really excited about, Smith said. Hopefully, this will be just the beginning.Lego structures of Maimonides Medical Center and an x-ray machine were put together by Victor Ty, RN.
The Mini Maker Faire highlighted nurse-imagined innovations and inventions that help healthcare workers care more efficiently for patients.
With guidance from the MakerNurse program, an initiative of the Little Devices Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, the faire was held in Maimonides simulation lab and was part of the the medical centers National Nurses Week celebration.
Exhibitions at the event included a mobile app station manned by MIT researcher Elizabeth Phillips to help nurses create their own mobile app for the Android smartphone.
According to Phillips, nurses have created extremely innovative apps that have helped change lives. One nurse, she said, created a text service that provides updates to new mothers on what they should be doing at certain stages of their childs life.Historic copies of AJN’s The Trading Post column were among the featured items at the event.
The app was designed mostly for women in South America and similar geographic regions, Phillips said.
A MakerNurse exhibit at the event included a 3D printer where MIT student Nikolas Albarran and MIT researcher Anna Young printed a small plastic device used to corral cables. The table also included copies of the Trading Post, an American Journal of Nursing publication last published 50 years ago that highlighted nursing inventions. Replicas of some of the devices nurses made back then like an eye irrigator made out of a polyethylene squeeze bottle with a pointed nozzle and removable cap and a catsup bottle used to administer an emetic to a child who had swallowed a handful of aspirin were on display.
The Maker Faire is an extension of the MakerNurse initiative, according to organizers. Maimonides is just one of the MakerNurse expedition sites at hospitals across the country including in Texas, Los Angeles, and Richmond, Va., said Kelly Reilly, MSN, RN-BC, CHSE, director of nursing research and evidence-based practice for Maimonides.
The exhibition sites each are responsible for a Technology Crash Cart that holds tools and materials to help get nurses creative juices flowing.
The MakerNurse program was developed to demonstrate the creative ingenuity of nurses and others on the healthcare team and to share devices and inventions that are being made in real time at the bedside to improve outcomes and treatments in care delivery, Reilly said. We are piloting the MIT navigator program here, where we are training navigators to find the nurses who are creating new things and to find out what nurses are already making. In essence, were recruiting students to be the pipeline to the folks at MIT.
Tracey Boyd is a regional reporter.