Hyderabad, July 10, 2018: L V Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI) hosted the 6th edition of Engineering the Eye Hackathon (ETE6) from July 4-8. Over 20 teams showcased the outcome of their creative minds that were built in 72 hours to shape the future of healthcare service providers. Every year, Engineering the Eye brings together a unique opportunity for innovators to delve into the possibilities of building solutions for eye healthcare problems. LVPEI, one of the largest eye care network in India, provides a platform for young minds to see their innovations go from prototype to product in the hands of the target audience through this annual event.
Engineering the Eye is a five-day healthcare hackathon where members of the ecosystem get together with enthusiastic minds across multiple disciplines to solve current pressing and future problems in eye care. Since 2013, the LVPEI Center for Innovation has hosted five editions of Engineering the Eye resulting in break through innovations. In keeping with LVPEI’s long-standing focus, the 6th edition of Engineering the Eye focused on the path to exponential innovation for equitable eye care. In this edition, the 6Ds of exponential innovation - Design Thinking, Disruptive, Deceptive, Dematerialize, Demonetize and Democratize were applied to bring out next-gen solutions from participants.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Virender Singh Sangwan, Director, LVPEI Center for Innovation; Centre for Ocular Regeneration (CORE) at LVPEI; and Dr Paul Dubord Chair in Cornea at LVPEI, said, “Engineering the Eye projects have spawned amazing collaborations with companies, research institutions and other communities. Some of them turned into greater efforts at the LVPEI Center for Innovation while others have been pursued as start-ups by the innovators. This year, we witnessed an amazing range of prototypes displaying the 6Ds of exponential innovation.”
At this year’s edition of the Engineering the Eye Hackathon, 15 unique problem statements were provided to the students by the clinician faculty at LVPEI. Out of these problem statements, eight were shortlisted for final presentation to the jury. The winner of the three finalists was an innovative idea for an endoscope to diagnose Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) in preterm babies, mentored by Dr Subhadra Jalali.
The partners for the recently concluded event included International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad, ZEISS, Microsoft, Cyient, Idealab, T-Hub, Endiya Partners, REDX, Algoleap Technologies Pvt. Ltd, Techsophy, 500 Startups.
The Center for Innovation at LVPEI has been the home to many innovations in the areas of eye care delivery, biology of the eye, surgical techniques, eye banking and children's eye health among others over the years. Two products that were conceptualized and created at previous events of the Engineering the Eye workshop won international accolades this year.
LVPEI Center for Innovation's FITTLE team was honored to receive the 2018 D&AD Wood Pencil, one of the most prestigious awards in design. https://www.dandad.org/awards/professional/2018/direct/26827/fittle-the-first-3d-printed-braille-puzzle/
The idea behind FITTLE was first conceived by Tania Jain, a designer from the National Institute of Design in Gandhinagar (http://taniajain.com) under the mentorship of Dr. Anthony Vipin Das, Associate Director at the L V Prasad Eye Institute during a ‘DIY workshop’ in Hyderabad, organized by LVPEI and the Camera Culture Group of Ramesh Raskar from MIT Media Lab.
The LVPEI Center for Innovation’s FITTLE won the BRONZE LION at the prestigious CANNES Festival of Creativity 2018 in France. http://fittle-project.com/
In India, 22 million people are visually impaired and most are unemployed because they can’t read. Braille learning tools are expensive and inaccessible and to solve this, FITTLE – the first 3D-printed Braille puzzle to aid learning was created. Each puzzle is divided into sections that connect to spell out a word and form a shape. The puzzles are distributed for free through a network of 176 centres across India. FITTLE opens a new avenue for children with visual impairment to explore the world around them to its closest possible reality. Besides being a motivator to learn Braille, this amusing recreational toy influences overall development through a constructive playtime.
The LVPEI Center for Innovation's Folding Foropter is now among top 18 finalists out of 993 entries for the Titan Design Impact Awards after the two rounds of national level screening. https://www.fofo-project.com/
Uncorrected Refractive Errors are the largest cause of avoidable blindness in the developing world. Visual impairment can have immediate and long-term consequences in children and adults, such as lost educational and employment opportunities, and impaired quality of life. Refractive errors can simply be diagnosed, measured, and corrected with the aid of optical corrective approaches and devices such as spectacles and contact lenses or by refractive surgical procedures. Current data suggests that more than 90% of people with Uncorrected Refractive Errors worldwide reside in rural and low-income countries. The Folding Foropter is a simple paper cut out that folds around two lenses, forming two tubes that slide in and out of each other. The user then needs to look at a fixed target through the device and slide the tube to see the target clearly. The device has a simple scale that then gives the approximate refractive power.
About L V Prasad Eye Institute
The L V Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI) was established in 1987 at Hyderabad as a not-for-profit, non-government, public-spirited, comprehensive eye care institution. LVPEI is governed by two trusts: the Hyderabad Eye Institute and the Hyderabad Eye Research Foundation. The Institute is a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Prevention of Blindness and a Global Resource Centre for VISION 2020: The Right to Sight initiative. LVPEI has ten active arms to its areas of operations: Clinical Services, Education, Research, Vision Rehabilitation, Rural and Community Eye Health, Eye Banking, Advocacy and Policy Planning, Capacity Building, Innovation and Product Development.
The LVPEI pyramidal model of eye care delivery currently includes a Centre of Excellence in Hyderabad, 3 tertiary centres in Bhubaneswar, Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada, 18 secondary and 173 primary care vision centres that cover the remotest rural areas in the four states of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Karnataka. For further information, visit the Institute’s website, www.lvpei.org
For further information, please contact:
Dr Sreedevi Yadavalli
Head - Communications & Corporate Relations
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