UIC Project Teams present research on Breakthrough Innovation for Vulnerable Populations

The OSF Complex Solutions Innovation (CSI) Team gathered reports and provided feedback with students working in the OSF Labs at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) Innovation Center for midterm presentations last week.

OSF Innovation is generating solutions around vulnerable populations through a collaborative partnership with the UIC Innovation Center. Drawing on the unbiased, specialized expertise of students and faculty, CSI is progressing on multiple initiatives in tandem towards alleviating key challenges affecting health outcomes for focus populations served by OSF HealthCare.

“We are very excited to be partnering with UIC as they conduct research and provide unique perspectives on potential solutions that consider a person’s whole being,” said Janelle Conway, MA, Program Manager with OSF Performance Improvement. “By crossing disciplines and asking these students to innovate in places innovation is not normally pursued, they have shown us that new ways of thinking emerge and creative ideas thrive.”

Student progress

Reaching the midpoint of their first semester of coursework, UIC students have achieved the following milestones in their project work:

  • Launched demographic research and current state analysis of specific communities served by OSF. Students have been able to uncover trends based on data pulled from public sources as well as information gathered by CSI.
  • Conducted interviews with focus populations, community agency representatives and OSF Mission Partners towards developing personas around which to design solutions. Each of these interviews have given the students a personal look into the communities and people they are serving in their efforts.
  • Developed patient journey pathways detailing the interplay of the social determinants of health with each population group. Each project group spoke to key insights on their focus populations discovered through qualitative feedback and verified through data.
  • Started work to hone ‘how might we’ statements into more narrow, focused topics. Each project team will develop their own unique solution sets specific to the focus population and issue identified through their research.

First impressions

Two classes of more than 40 students each and a 10 person lab working in cross-discipline project teams presented their midterm boards to representatives of the CSI Team and several OSF HealthCare leaders. Members of the CSI Team engaged with students directly providing feedback and guidance on future opportunities to help refine their project scope.

“During midterm presentations, we heard many of the students using words such as ‘we,’ ‘our’ and ‘us,’” shared Chelsea Courson, Performance Improvement Specialist. “This is exactly what we wanted through this partnership; the students feel so deeply connected to the work and those we serve that they feel a part of us, One OSF.”

The CSI Team looks forward to the ground-breaking solutions that can benefit those we serve coming out of the UIC Innovation Center.

Last Updated: April 22, 2022