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Nurse Innovation Hackathons Our Nurse Innovation hackathons provide a unique experience for nurses to flex their innovation muscles and receive the support and motivation needed to bring their ideas to life and improve human health.

Nurses are change-makers, problem-solvers and forward thinkers. Get ready to create systemic and sustainable change for a thriving workforce and healthier work environment, with the opportunity to receive up to $150,000 in grant funding to bring your ideas to life! Applications are now open!
Register for a 1-day in-person Mini Hack on June 7 to collaborate with peers, apply design thinking principles and develop innovative solutions for pressing healthcare issues.
About the 2024 Pitch-A-Thon

Take it Apart | Fix it | Build it Better

Johnson & Johnson, the Society of Nurse Scientists Innovators Entrepreneurs and Leaders (SONSIEL) and Microsoft have teamed up for the fifth year in a row to host the next NurseHack4Health virtual Pitch-A-Thon, supported by ALL IN Wellbeing First for Healthcare and the Johnson & Johnson Foundation.

The NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon is free and open globally to non-profit/501c3 designation health systems, or those with a fiscal partner. Nurse-led teams should be interdisciplinary – collaborating across professions, departments and the health system maximizes creativity and innovation in problem-solving. Teams will receive coaching support throughout the process.

Applications open May 6 and are due August 2. The top entries will be invited to pitch their innovative solutions at a virtual session at 1:00 pm ET on October 15, with the opportunity to receive up to $150,000 in grant funding.
Key Dates
  • Instructions icon
    Applications Open
    May 6, 2024
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    Applications Due
    Aug. 2, 2024
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    Finalists Selected
    Aug. 30, 2024
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    Innovation Accelerator
    Sept. 5 – Oct. 11, 2024
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    Pitch-A-Thon Event
    Oct. 15, 2024
Visit the NurseHack4Health website to find out more
Learn About Past Pitch-A-Thons
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The first-ever NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon took place in October 2022. Ten nurse-led multidisciplinary health system teams took center stage to pitch their solutions for redesigning a healthcare workplace where nurses and other health care professionals can thrive.
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In 2023, the Pitch-A-Thon journey began in September, as more than 20 health system teams participated in the NurseHack4Health Hackathon. Over a fast-paced weekend, teams developed and pitched their ideas to catalyze a healthy work environment, and ten finalist teams were selected to pitch their ideas for the chance to receive $150,000 in grant funding.

What is NurseHack4Health?

NurseHack4Health is a community of nurses, healthcare professionals, developers, engineers, IT experts and other innovators focused on ideating and collaborating to address today’s most pressing healthcare challenges.

Through specialized programming, NurseHack4Health empowers participants with the skills and mindset needed to proactively address the dynamic challenges of healthcare. Our community began in 2019 with nurse Hackathons, weekend-long live and virtual events where individual nurses and teams envision and build solutions to real-world challenges.

Why Should You Attend?

Through our programming, nurses learn pragmatic ways to redefine complex healthcare issues, foster creative problem solving, prototype innovative solutions through human-AI collaboration, and integrate design methods into nursing practice and to develop a healthcare environment where nurses and patients thrive. 

How to Prepare
  • Hackathons champion nurse-led innovation by bringing nurses together with people from different professions, in-person or virtually, to “hack” real solutions to health problems in a supportive team setting with peers and mentors. Participants don’t need to come with an idea – just be ready to join a team, examine the problem and dive in to develop a solution. By the end of the hackathon, the goal is for teams to have minimum viable products (MVPs) that can be fast-tracked for further development and implementation in a healthcare setting.

    Attending a hackathon is a great way to bond, brainstorm, develop and pitch healthcare solutions that will forever change the way you think about a problem, your perceived value and impact, and your vision for your future in nursing and healthcare!

    Watch Our NurseHack4Health May 2020 Video
  • Innovation Skills
    What does it take to make the most of a hackathon experience? Understanding fundamental innovation skills—such as problem solving, risk-taking, collaboration and strategic planning—can help you make the most of your time participating in a hackathon.

    Even when you develop a valuable idea, sometimes figuring out what to do next can feel overwhelming.

    Get started today and explore how to unlock your potential to spark innovative health solutions and improve patient care. Be sure to check out the section on Design Thinking for Health – a must-read before any hackathon! Learn more:

    Skills Nurse Innovators Should Develop and Grow
  • What Makes a Good Pitch
    Pitching your idea to a panel of judges is a critical part of the hackathon process. The judges are often well-respected industry experts who will examine how well your idea meets hackathon criteria, such as its viability or impact on human health.

    Each team typically has three to five minutes to present to the judges and answer questions. Assembling a rock star team and developing a valuable idea are critical; however, sometimes teams fall short in making a compelling pitch. Learn more:

    How to Tell Stories that Influence People and Inspire Action

    NurseHack4Health Pitch Template

    How to Win a Pitch
  • Open Source Innovation
    Hackathons can have different goals, such as launching a start-up business or generating ideas for the open market to adopt. As a participant, it’s important to understand your responsibilities as well as the desired hackathon output.

    “Open source” means that no one legally owns or has intellectual property associated with the ideas. People come together to hack for social good and ideas are publicly available to any individual or organization to quickly use or adapt to help solve problems. For NurseHack4Health, participants are asked to post their ideas on GitHub, a collaborative hosting platform where hackers can iterate collectively. Learn more:

    What is Open Source

    Open Source Resources

    GitHub Learning Lab
  • Minimum Viable Product
    The goal of many healthcare hackathons is for teams to develop a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). A minimum viable product has just enough core features for the solution to be demonstrated or used. Developers then typically deploy the product to potential customers or early adopters who are more likely to give feedback and be able to grasp a product vision from an early prototype. The advantage of developing an MVP is to quickly get a working solution for a pressing problem into the healthcare setting. Learn more:

    Forbes: What Is A Minimum Viable Product, And Why Do Companies Need Them?

    LEANSTACK: What is a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)

    CleverTap: What Is A Minimum Viable Product + Methodologies For Marketers
Group of smiling nurses in scrubs holding folders
Group of smiling nurses in scrubs holding folders
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