Subscribe to Notes on Nursing, our monthly news digest.
Nursing News & ProgramsNurses Leading Innovation

Announcing the 2023 NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon Awardee Team!

The nurse-led team from Vancouver Coastal Health received $150,000 in grant funding to bring their AI charting solution entitled “Autochart” to life at the 2023 NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon! Find out what’s next for the AutoChart team as they take their idea for catalyzing a healthy environment where nurses and patients thrive to the next level.
Nursing News & ProgramsNurses Leading Innovation

Announcing the 2023 NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon Awardee Team!


The nurse-led team from Vancouver Coastal Health received $150,000 in grant funding to bring their AI charting solution entitled “Autochart” to life at the 2023 NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon! Find out what’s next for the AutoChart team as they take their idea for catalyzing a healthy environment where nurses and patients thrive to the next level.
NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon.png

Ten nurse-led health system teams took center stage at the NurseHack4Health Pitch-A-Thon on Nov. 2 to pitch their best ideas for catalyzing a healthy environment where nurses and patients thrive, and the team from Vancouver Coastal Health was awarded a total of $150,000 in grant funding to bring their AutoChart solution to life.

Representing the transformative power of nurse-led innovation, the second-ever Pitch-A-Thon presented by Johnson & Johnson, SONSIEL – Society of Nurse Scientists, Innovators, Entrepreneurs, & Leaders, Microsoft, and supported by ALL IN: Wellbeing First for Healthcare and the Johnson & Johnson Foundation, focused on unleashing the power of nurses as innovative leaders.

Working in multidisciplinary teams of nurses, other healthcare professionals, engineers, tech professionals, human resource leaders and beyond, teams presented new solutions to improve the healthcare environment. This year’s awardee team focused on charting, pitching a solution that uses AI to automate patient assessments to save time, administrative burden for nurses and improve patient care.

The 2023 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 in areas like innovative care delivery models, new solutions to address violence and bullying, and concepts to attract, onboard and develop nurses’ skills so that they thrive in their roles.

Ten finalist teams were selected from the NurseHack4Health event to get further coaching, and prepare to participate in the NurseHack4Health Innovation Accelerator and Pitch-A-Thon, presenting their pitches to a panel of industry-expert judges, including Michael Goldberg, MD, Scholar-in-Residence at The Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare and Vice-Chair of the Division of Pediatric Orthopedics, and Clinical Professor of Orthopedics at the University Of Washington School Of Medicine; Katie Boston-Leary, PHD, MBA, MHA, RN, NEA-BC, Director of Nursing Programs at the American Nurses Association; Robyn Begley, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN, Chief Executive Officer of the American Organization for Nursing Leadership; Kathy Howell, MBA, BSN, RN, NEA-BC, Chief Nursing Executive at UCHealth; Richard Westphal, PhD, RN, PMHCNS-BC, PMHNP-BC, FAAN, advanced practice psychiatric nurse and professor at the University of Virginia School of Nursing and Riza Mauricio, PhD, RN, CPNP-PC/AC, FCCM, CCRN, an advanced practice nurse at MD Anderson Children's Cancer Hospital.

“I am always blown away by the caliber of creativity and innovation at our NurseHack4Health events,” said Lynda Benton, Senior Director, Global Community Impact, Johnson & Johnson. “Each of the finalist teams demonstrates why nurses are so central to transforming healthcare – they see the challenges firsthand and have an invaluable perspective on solutions that others may find intractable. We need to actively listen to and champion ideas coming from the nursing workforce to drive much needed change in the healthcare work environment – that would benefits nurses and the patients they care for.”

Johnson & Johnson congratulates all ten finalist teams. Watch their pitches here.

  • ChristianaCare – HEART (Helping Engage, Attract, Retain & Train), an AI solution for onboarding new nurses
  • City of Hope National Medical Center – The LINC (Leadership Innovation in Nursing Center), a resource platform for nurse managers
  • Montefiore Health – Transitional Care Excellence, a solution reimagining the journey from hospital to home
  • Duke University Health System – DEVR AI Innovations, a virtual reality de-escalation training program
  • Universidade do Estado de Santa Catarina – Inside Nursing, an intrainstitutional nursing awareness campaign)
  • Vancouver Coast Health – AutoChart, an AI-automated nursing documentation platform)
  • ChristianaCare – Virtual Acute Care Network, a tiered resource platform to expand virtual care
  • Mercy – Intelligent Pressure Injury Prevention, a smart device to improve early detection and outcomes
  • ChristianaCare – Building a Disability Support Network, a social services training program
  • City of Hope National Medical Center – Equity NOW, a Social Determinants of Health mitigation toolkit

Meet the awardee team and learn more about their solution below!

Vancouver Coastal Health – AutoChart

Sally Newton-Mason, BSc, BSN, RN, MSN; Clement Chui, BSN, RN; Matteo Rizzo, PhD candidate in artificial intelligence; Rajesh Sebastian, MSN, BSN, RN-BC; Saffrin Granby, BSc, MDSCL; Ryan Yan, MD; Kina Ellison, MD, CCFP (FPA)

Newton-Mason and Chui.png
Source: NurseHack4Health

Nurses spend anywhere from 1 to 4 hours charting per shift, filling out up to 300 data fields per patient. From symptoms and screenings to vitals and medications, charting is essential for patient safety and communication across clinical teams. But it also takes nurses away from the bedside, which can cause quality of care issues, safety events and burnout. Yet, late charting has its own issues, like impaired communication and uncoordinated treatment.

Transcription solutions – which translate speech to medical documentation – are one way to reduce the administrative burden of charting. In their pitch, however, Newton-Mason noted that nurses have been excluded from most transcription services, which tend to target physicians.

AutoChart is an AI-enabled documentation solution that uses natural language processing to capture beside patient assessments. Speech is recorded and transcribed to text in real time, and AI extracts and organized keywords, which are uploaded to Cerner, the system’s electronic medical record provider, for the nurse to review and verbalize any additional assessment data.

The solution also generates handover information automatically, saving up to 10 minutes per patient per 24-hour shift, according to the team, as well as creating automatic shift summaries.

AutoChart Shift Handover Example.png
Source: AutoChart team, Vancouver Coastal Health

In pilots, the solution has 90 percent text-to-transcript accuracy, and 95 percent accuracy in classifying speech into Cerner assessment fields. The team also reported 100 percent of nurses surveyed wanted to use the technology, and 100 percent classified verbalizing the assessment as ‘easy.’

The team estimates AutoChart could save $4.5 million to $21 million per 950-bed hospital, by freeing 45 minutes to 4 hours per shift for every nurse. This creates more time to provide quality care, which could lead to improved outcomes and fewer safety events, while potentially reducing burnout and improving nurse satisfaction.

With grant funding, the team will begin software development in year one, with the award supporting infrastructure, security, operations, and logistical needs. In year two, the team plans to pilot and validate the solution in a three-month study.

To learn more about NurseHack4Health, visit To learn more about Johnson & Johnson’s commitment to nurse innovation, click here.

Latest from Johnson & Johnson Nursing
  • Girl speaking into microphone with group of nurses gathered around her in a room
    To solve the nursing shortage and sustain a thriving workforce, it’s essential that new nurses transition to practice successfully. For three health systems, nurse residency programs are not only keeping nurses at the bedside but helping them build confidence and find belonging.
  • female nurse with stethoscope
    In the last two years, the Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act has created programs that increase access to, and reduce stigma of, evidence-based mental health treatment for nurses and all healthcare workers. But there is much more work to be done to support our nation’s healthcare workforce. As Congress looks to reauthorize the bill, here are three areas of focus for 2024 and beyond.
  • Nurse holding a device with a blue digital globe
    Cardiac care nurse Michele Santoro and her fellow clinicians at the Yale New Haven Heart and Vascular Center routinely race against time to save lives. In honor of American Heart Month, read on to find out how her innovations combine technology and a human touch to transform cardiovascular care delivery and improve patient outcomes.