• December 5, 2023

Forge Academy to host healthcare technology hackathon

Digital technologies education company Forge Academy will host a healthcare technology hackathon to conceptualise how health professionals can better use robotics in the healthcare sector.

The event will be held at the Forge Academy & Labs building at the Gantry, in Fourways, on May 17.

There will also be a virtual participation option for those unable to attend in person.

Robotics improve performance in surgery, streamline supplier delivery of much-needed healthcare goods and allow medical professionals more time with patients, Forge Academy notes.

“During the Covid-19 impacted period, hospitals and clinics used robots to perform basic human tasks, which reduced exposure to pathogens. The reduced exposure directly impacted the spread of the virus through less human interaction.

“We will explore how else this technology can benefit citizens in combating disease and improving healthcare efficiencies,” says Forge Academy CEO Arthur Wade Anderson.

The company has partnered with Nokia, Ozone Connect and the Gauteng City Region Academy for the Health-Tek hackathon, which is a sprint-like brainstorming and software design event in which participants collaborate intensively on the development of software projects.

The hackathon is open to anyone in the healthcare industry and information technology specialists interested in coding and development, and those interested have until May 15 to apply to participate.

Participants will be working in teams and will be exposed to the current robotics, augmented reality, virtual reality and Internet of Things technology at Forge Academy, which will be used to achieve the hackathon objectives.

The teams will brainstorm how technology can be better used in healthcare and present their ideas and solutions to a panel of judges. The ideas need to be affordable and sustainable, not to drive up the cost of healthcare.

They also need to eliminate current bottlenecks within the healthcare system making services more widely accessible, especially to low-income areas, the company says.

The hackathon will focus on identifying how healthcare can use robots to improve patient experiences; how robots can improve the administration of and assistance with patients; integrating Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality to improve service delivery and healthcare training; and how can technology advance the support needed by elderly in healthcare.

“Hackathons have a way of igniting and merging creativity, innovation and problem-solving. We are always amazed to see the concepts and ideas presented at the end of our hackathons, and I look forward to seeing what the participants will ‘hack’ up for this event,” says Forge Academy COO Craig Clutty.