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January 28, 2016 3:17 PM

Technology meets health care at campus event

More than 135 guests gathered at Conestoga’s School of Health and Life Sciences on January 27 to participate in Hacking Health Waterloo - an event that connects technology experts and health care providers throughout the region. 

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More than 135 guests filled Conestoga’s School of Health and Life Sciences on January 27 for Hacking Health Waterloo. The event connected the region’s tech experts and health care professionals for an evening of networking and discussion about collaborative projects.

Hacking Health originated in Montreal in 2012 and now boasts 32 chapters worldwide. The Waterloo chapter launched in October 2015 and the recent meetup at Conestoga, which drew the highest attendance for the group so far, was the chapter's third event. Meetups allow participants to network and stay current on local collaborations and projects involving health care issues.

Guest speakers included Doug Kavanagh, co-founder and medical director at CognisantMD; Salam Gabran, the co-founder of Novela Inc. - a start-up company spun off from the University of Waterloo; and Ricky Chan from the Ontario Brain Institute who announced the launch of  the 2016 Entrepreneurs Competition.

Presenters from Conestoga included Ig Kolenko, director of Conestoga’s Centre for Smart Manufacturing and chair of Engineering & IT, who provided guests with an overview of the college’s innovative high tech programs and accredited Engineering degrees. He also outlined the applied research and co-op opportunities available that would pair local health care providers and manufacturers with students interested in applying their knowledge and skills to real-world projects.

Faculty member Justin St-Maurice presented a case study that highlighted a public-private-academic partnership between students in Conestoga’s Applied Health Information Science program, Guelph General Hospital and Information Builders a business intelligence solutions vendor. The partnership has resulted in the development of successful information solutions for the hospital.

Hacking Health Waterloo will hold its next event on February 25.

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