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Vital Signs Monitor Device ‘Prioritage’ Wins 2018 Invent@SU Competition in New York City
After seeing news coverage of natural disasters and mass casualty incidents where victims outnumber responding EMTs, bioengineering student Angelica O’Hara ’19 and biochemistry student Ibnul Rafi ’18 wanted to find a way to help first responders monitor numerous patients at the same time.
“EMTs are constantly making judgment calls—who should I go to next?” says O’Hara. “There is nothing currently that takes your blood pressure, your heart rate, your oxygen and your respiratory rate all in one device—something that combines all the vital signs.”
During the Invent@SU invention accelerator program in New York City this summer, O’Hara and Rafi developed a system called Prioritage that allows first responders to put armband units on multiple patients to measure vital signs and relay them to a central onsite monitoring device.
“The system will sort patients from most critical to least critical, will sort from who should be treated first, who should be treated last,” says Rafi.
“We thought if a command person had a sort of central base to observe everything and give them a better view that could be helpful,” says O’Hara.
O’Hara and Rafi were among 20 SU students participating in the Invent@SU session in SU’s Fisher Center in midtown Manhattan. Over the course of six weeks, they designed, prototyped and pitched new inventions to guest evaluators and judges.
Finance and information technology major Hanna Yacubov and bioengineering major Patrick Riolo took second place with their Artemis Wand invention. It is designed to help people with disabilities reach household items by using Fidlock fasteners on the side of an item and on an extendable wand. They came up with the idea after one of the Invent@SU instructors brought in his child’s bike helmet.
“It had this Fidlock fastening tech and we said—we can use this,” said Riolo.
A significant part of Invent@SU is feedback from accomplished alumni and other professionals. Teams pitch their inventions to guest evaluators each week leading up to final judging.
“We are really passionate about the product so it was easy for us to pitch,” said Yacubov.
Rafi and O’Hara won $5,000 for first place and Yacubov and Riolo won $2,500. Many of the teams plan to continue working on their inventions and work with the Blackstone Launchpad on campus. O’Hara and Rafi say they have already received good feedback on their invention from EMTs.
“I know if I was a victim in an incident like this, I would feel much safer with something there to constantly monitor me, I would feel like the EMT is almost always with me, has eyes over me, doesn’t forget about me after he walks away,” says O’Hara. “A sense of safety and security.”
Another Invent@SU session will be held on the SU campus from July 2 to August 9. Any undergraduate student could apply to join either the New York City or Syracuse sessions.
About Syracuse University
Syracuse University is a private, international research university with distinctive academics, diversely unique offerings and an undeniable spirit. Located in the geographic heart of New York State, with a global footprint, and nearly 150 years of history, Syracuse University offers a quintessential college experience. The scope of Syracuse University is a testament to its strengths: a pioneering history dating back to 1870; a choice of more than 200 majors and 100 minors offered through 13 schools and colleges; nearly 15,000 undergraduates and 5,000 graduate students; more than a quarter of a million alumni in 160 countries; and a student population from all 50 U.S. states and 123 countries. For more information, please visit www.syracuse.edu.