Associate Director of Public Affairs, University of Utah Health
Twenty-seven student teams showcased next-generation medical device projects at the Utah State Capitol Building on Monday evening. But the grand prize went to SoundPass, which received $20,000 in milestone funding.
Comprised of second- and third-year medical students from the Spencer Fox Eccles School of Medicine at the University of Utah, the SoundPass team focused on improving the highly complex process of placing a catheter into the right lateral ventricle of the brain for patients suffering from traumatic brain injury.
Their solution? A device with real-time ultrasound imaging to guide neurosurgeons during the procedure to improve accuracy in placing the catheter. According to the SoundPass team, the device could reduce the number of placement attempts—sometimes multiple attempts have been required—to one.
Hosted by the U’s Center for Medical Innovation, Bench to Bedside annually challenges students to identify and address potential improvements in the current health care market. Interdisciplinary student teams collaborate with practicing health care professionals and industry experts on novel solutions to common problems.
This year, winning teams took home more than $80,000 in milestone funding, receiving awards in categories such as Best in Business, Best in Engineering, Patient Safety, and a Consumer’s Choice Award determined by popular vote at the Competition Night event.
“Utah’s life sciences industry is among the fastest growing in the nation. Having the Center for Medical Innovation’s Bench to Bedside program available to showcase the talents and skills of students makes it clear the future of health care is bright,” said Mark Paul, Executive Director of the Center for Medical Innovation. “It’s exciting to be around so many bright young people focused on the next generation of health care.”
Monday night was Mark Paul’s first official event as executive director, being named to the role earlier this year by University of Utah Health. Paul was introduced by Michael Good, MD, CEO of University of Utah Health, at the beginning of Monday evening’s awards ceremony.
An estimated 350 attendees comprised of students, industry professionals, mentors, investors, entrepreneurs, U leadership, family, and friends filled the Capitol Rotunda. Student teams an presented their efforts accumulated over the 2022-2023 school year. This year’s competition boasted more than 80 student competitors representing six different colleges and universities across the state of Utah. In addition, a total of 115 professional mentors and judges also participated.