Building a plan for the future

The week started with a test run for our pitch at Sting Test Drive. We presented our pitch in front of some of the other teams and got lots and lots of valuable feedback. This feedback we used to improve our pitch during this week in order to be ready for the final pitch competition on Monday.

The NABC model that we are using for our 4 minutes pitch.

Parallely, we have also been working on finalizing our business canvas and on our business plan. This means that we have been locking ourselves into one of the small group rooms at Flemingsberg and had long discussion on the whats and hows of our future business. It is great to also have the other team around for formal and informal discussions in the office or at lunch. This week for example we were discussion each other’s business plans.

There has of course also been some time to work individually which each team member spend with what they are good at. John filled his sketchbook and computer with many ideas and sketches and his desk with prototyping material. Désirée was at the hospital to organize a workshop with a group of midwives as well as a test of one of our minimal viable prototypes (MVP). Carina worked a lot with the pitch and the business plan, and I worked with prototyping, IP and our R&D strategy.

One highlight of the week was a very inspirational seminar with Bertil Guve on entrepreneurship and funding in medtech.

Slowly but steady we are building a plan on how to to take our idea further after the fellowship ends (in less than 2 month!).

Fritzi / Team Obstetrics

Happy customers

The last week was all about talking to the people for whom our work makes a difference.

To get more inside from the potential customers of our solution to breastfeeding problems we interviewed mothers and mothers to be on their experiences and expectations.

Furthermore we got a lot of valuable feedback from people working at the Women’s Department on the projects that deal with solutions to local needs of the department. Since the last reference group meeting we recruited Master students to the four project that the reference group (consisting of  several doctors, midwives and nurses of the department) had chosen. The students started working on those projects in January and now presented their first results and their plans on how to proceed with their work to the reference group. The reference group contributed with their experiences and ideas from many years of working at the department and gave valuable feedback to the students.

David, one of our Master students, presenting his project to the reference group

In a lunch meeting with the head of the department we discussed the clinical report, which describes a number of selected local needs and gives suggestions for solutions. From her we got very positive feedback on the clinical report. She confirmed the relevance of many of the needs and told us about how the department already started working on solving one of the needs that we had identified. She also said that reading the report gave her inspiration to many more projects on improving how the departments works.

What could be a better feedback than hearing that the department now actively works with the needs that we identified?


Fritzi // Team Obstetrics

No idea is too crazy

The past week we finally started with brainstorming, an activity all of us had been looking forward to for weeks. We decided to do brainstorming on all of our four top needs before we decide which one we will move further forward with. And so we sat together for hours and filled the walls of our meeting room with magic whiteboards full of post-its, sketches and crazy ideas.

In parallel we were also preparing for in-depth interviews with patients and experts from healthcare to learn even more about our four needs and get some additional inspiration.

Maria as moderator for our first brainstorming session
Maria was the moderator for our first brainstorming session
Brainstorming with Maria
Brainstorming with Maria

At the beginning of the week we had a visitor – Maria from d·Health, the Biodesign Fellowship Program in Barcelona, joined us for two days to get in touch with healthcare in Sweden and to see how breastfeeding mothers are supported at a Swedish hospital. She also helped us to kick-off the brainstorming by introducing some methods she had learned during her time in the fellowship program. Many thanks to Maria for leading a wonderful brainstorming session!

Towards the end of the week we used another opportunity to learn from the experience of an earlier fellowship team. We visited Pilloxa, a startup founded by fellows of the program from 2014/2015 and bribed them with cake and beers into sharing there learnings from surviving as a start-up within healthcare with us. Many different topics, such as team development, financing, work organization and the specific challenges for start-ups within healthcare were discussed. I won’t reveal any of the many tips we got here – if you want them to share some of their advice with you, you will have to try to convince them yourselves.

It is only one week left before Christmas but we are prepared to use it to its max for brainstorming and interviews.
Fritzi // Team Obstetrics

Team Obstetrics: So Many Needs and So Little Time

During the last week we have been working intensively with the local needs that are specific to the clinic. With the help of our clinical supervisor and our clinical mentor we filtered down our long list to ten needs which can have a high impact for the clinic if addressed. To get a broad and diverse input to these needs we distributed detailed descriptions of these needs and then discussed them individually with several midwifes and doctors. We put so much time on this, because next week we will, together with the clinic, choose three to four needs, to which we will recruit students to work on solution as their Master’s Thesis project.

Lunch break walk in the snow behind the hospital.
Lunch break walk in the snow behind the hospital.

But the week has not only been about filtering needs, but also about learning and personal development. On Monday we had our first individual sessions with our psychologist. The content of these sessions is as individual as it is secret, but I believe we all worked on developing personal strategies to improve some aspect of our work in the fellowship team.  Furthermore we had a workshop together with the other team, in which we discussed how to work with our commercial needs. We discussed specific needs as well as strategies how to evaluate these needs and in the end filter down to only a handful. Having more than 200 commercial needs, filtering down will be a challenge that we are ready to meet in the upcoming weeks. On Friday we had a lecture on the reimbursement system for medical products in Sweden, knowledge that will come in handy when deciding which needs are worth pursuing.

We also started thinking about practical aspects of the work that is ahead of us and looked at an office and prototyping workshop space which we could use once we have decided which of the commercial needs is the chosen on. At least some of us are looking forward to getting their hands dirty in prototyping.

Will this be the table where we do our prototyping?
Will this be the table where we do our prototyping?


Fritzi // Team Obstetrics

Team Obstetrics: Selecting needs

It’s been a hectic week for team Obstetrics. We have had two processes going on at the same time; having our first business mentor meeting and preparing for our second, most important, reference group meeting.

A big help on the way was the EIT-health meeting that John and Fritzi participated in in Barcelona. They came home with lots of advice that has already helped us, but also made our work more creative and fun, with the props that we have incorporated in our work [to learn more see our last blog post]. Even though it has been a tough week with several deadlines we have handled it well and the collaboration in the group has gone great. Everyone has worked hard, shared ideas and been supportive of each other.

The biggest challenge this week has been going down from a big amount of local needs for the clinic, to the ten that we are going to present on our reference group meeting. It has been difficult and we had to kill several darlings and also take a few steps back to see the whole picture. It has also been very educational to truly try and focus on needs and not solutions (so that we in the end solve what really is the issue).  

It was also a lot of fun to meet our business mentors! They had a lot of useful input that we will take with us to the next phase.

We have also continued with our “Friday Fun” – activities. It is a way to make sure that the collaboration in the group continues being good and that we have fun with each other. This time we did “action painting” which had a great side effect of making our (new) room more colorful.

Action painting for "Friday Fun"
Action painting for “Friday Fun”

The upcoming week we will be preparing even more for the reference group meeting and challenge the needs that we have.

//Désirée (doctor) for team Obstetrics

Team Obstetrics: We Want To See It All!

As I write this, five weeks of work in the clinic lie behind us, which means that we have only one more week of observation ahead of us. We have discussed and noted down more than 700 observations by now; and need after need gets added to our list.

img_20161012_102508414The surgeon console of the robot surgery system.

Realizing that the observation phase will soon be over, this week was characterized by the (doomed to fail, given the size of Danderyd’s Kvinnokliniken) attempt to observe all the things that we hadn’t seen so far. Désirée took a closer look at the pre- and aftercare, doing observations at the “Mödravårdscentralen” (prenatal care center) and at “Hotell BB”. Probably the “baby-richest” week of all of us had John, who observed planned C-sections for an entire day, as well as two vaginal deliveries and one emergency C-section during his day at the delivery ward. In contrast, I focused more on the engineering site of healthcare and spend some time following the clinical engineers around. Furthermore, I observed robotic laparoscopic surgeries (as I am an engineer I had to see this!). One of Carina’s highlights of the week was to finally see a fetal scalp blood test during a delivery.

img_20161013_144302076Testing of an ultrasound probe on a phantom.

Today, like every Friday afternoon, we sat together and translated our observations into needs. Then we concluded the week by “Friday Fun”; this time Carina had prepared a music quiz and Désirée beat us all.


Fritzi // Team Obstetrics


The Cutting Room Floor!

A taste of the movie industry, we are surrounded by ideas on the cutting room floor! Some were easy to throw out, others required more heated debates of what the market analysis showed or if it would be a fun project to work with long term.

Only a few have survived the cut and made it to the next level to either help the clinic specifically or to be turned into potential businesses for us.

Our applications for the master’s thesis projects for the clinic have been met with a steady flow of very interesting and motivated students interviewing for the few spots, a luxurious problem to have. By next week we will have our teams assembled ready to go for January!

Happily, a few of the great ideas which were thrown begrudgingly on the floor were picked up again to present to a group of students from the Unit for Bioentrepreneurship’s “Product Development in the Biomedical Industry” course. I had a great time today with Caroline from the Team with a Heart and Per from Team Plastic, as we each presented 3 needs we have identified at our clinics to the students. They had lots of questions and we look forward to seeing which topics they will pick to work with for their course. Perhaps they can breathe a fresh new prospective into our ideas and develop new medtech solutions to help patients!