MIT Hacking Medicine GrandHack Boston April 19-21, 2024

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Apply to Grand Hack 2024!

Learn about MIT Hacking Medicine GrandHack’s mission in the following video!

Grand Hack 2024 Tracks

Healthy Living
with Everyday Objects

Redesigning the things we use everyday can add important monitoring, prevention and treatment features to things we — or our grandmothers — use everyday.  Precisely because we use these things everyday, they already fit into our lives and habits. Adding biometric sensors, connectivity, and clever designs can unlock continuous monitoring/baselining to catch and prevent health problems sooner.

Sensors can be added to devices we use everyday — TV remotes, toothbrushes, wearables, helmets, toys, utensils, doorknobs, toilet seats, etc. Japan has used internet connected tea kettles to gently monitor the activity level of elderly, given how central tea plays in culture. Shoes have been outfitted with sensors to monitor and treat Parkinson gait/pace problems. Canes with added LED lights can prevent falls. Everyday objects can become smart and improve our health where we live rather than in clinics and hospitals.

Everyday objects for healthcare can prevent, monitor and treat healthcare problems worth billions of dollars: activities of daily living, Parkinsonian Tremor, diabetic foot ulcers, sleep problems, incontinence, physical rehabilitation, cardiac health, memory exercises, mental health, medication management, rural populations and many more.

Women's Health

Over the past decade, we’ve witnessed a notable uptick in public awareness and funding dollars directed towards women’s health startups. Despite the progress made, significant hurdles remain. Disparities in access to care, underdiagnosis of certain conditions, and limited treatment options continue to hinder women’s health outcomes worldwide.  

While reproductive rights, maternal health, and screening for female-specific cancers remain critical focal points, there are numerous other health conditions that demand attention. For example, health conditions that are not exclusive to women may affect them disproportionately, have different clinical manifestations, or be underdiagnosed. Additionally, the intersectionality of women’s health cannot be overlooked. Factors such as race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, and disability intersect to shape health outcomes in complex ways.

Gender-sensitive health care is essential to address the unique needs and challenges faced by women globally and to minimize disparities in health outcomes. How might we work towards a future where all women have access to high-quality, culturally sensitive care that meets their diverse needs?

Aging/Elderly Populations

The global population is increasing in the elderly demographic with the anticipated growth in the population over 65, going from 58 million (in 2022) to 82 million (by 2050). This attests to the great advancements in healthcare services, treatments and cures, and it also highlights the urgent need for innovative healthcare solutions tailored to the elderly’s specific needs, including managing chronic conditions, degenerative diseases, mobility issues, and cognitive impairments. Advancements in healthcare and technology are essential for supporting this demographic shift, optimizing the healthcare system, and improving care for the aging population. Ageing is also the main risk factor for most neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer disease (AD) and Parkinson disease (PD). Tissues composed primarily of postmitotic cells, such as the brain, are especially sensitive to the effects of ageing. Prevalence of AD, which doubles every 5 years after age 65, also is expected to increase from the current statistic of 33% of seniors dying from AD. By 2050, it is anticipated that this number will have quadrupled due to the high ageing population that will create a significant load on healthcare systems. How might we address the growing care and support needs of an aging population, and design services, devices, and solutions centered around the needs of the elderly and improve their quality of life? 

For over a decade, we have empowered and recognized a global community of 30+ countries and 25,685 hackers in healthcare innovation.

This year, we will be hosting a Beyond Hack Track, where we invite a select number of past participant teams to return to Grand Hack and take their ventures to the next level with the specialized guidance of judges, mentors, and workshops.

Some challenges that teams will tackle: Does the technology work safely to solve the problem, and will clinicians/patients utilize it? How can we further refine business models, secure funding, and make strategic go-to-market strategies?

Apply to participate in the Beyond Hack Track if you would like to return to Grand Hack with your team!

Some prizes include: 

  1. Introductions to incubators, accelerators and early-stage venture capital funds
  2. Cash prizes to fund further development

Are you an expert in your field?

Apply to be a mentor!