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Hexcite design thinking session

The Technology Innovation Center saw an opportunity to provide clinicians who have great ideas with the resources they need to design a software solution and business that also achieves the center’s goal of delivering better patient care.

We created Hexcite (Excited for Health) to harness this opportunity and help launch real products and start-up teams directly from the problem space.

Teams include clinical, business, design and technical leads who work to solve clinical problems. Participants design a user-centered technology and customer interview-based business while also applying for funding to create their technical solution. Participants go through 16 weeks of expert-led sessions and workshops. At the end of the program, teams are ready to build with the Technology Innovation Center, conduct a pilot in the clinical space and launch a start-up.

Participation in this program is free to undergraduate and graduate students. Tuition for clinical participants is $5000 and may be covered by the sponsoring department or through other means.

Who can participate?

We welcome the following individuals to apply to the program, which will run from late August to mid-December.

  • Business leads: Johns Hopkins administrators and researchers, Johns Hopkins Carey Business School students, Johns Hopkins Master’s in Public Health students, Johns Hopkins Master’s in Health Administration students, and Johns Hopkins undergraduate business majors
  • Design leads: MICA MBA/ MA students, MICA Social Design students, MICA undergraduate graphic design students, and Johns Hopkins Arts as Applied to Medicine students
  • Technical leads: Johns Hopkins Whiting School of Engineering undergraduate and graduate students
  • Clinical leads: Clinical faculty or staff from Johns Hopkins Medicine or its affiliates

Clinical leads must apply with a clinical problem that they would like to solve through a digital health solution.

Non-clinical leads are invited to apply and will be matched with a clinical lead and his/her idea.

How to Apply

Applications are closed for the 2017 program. For questions, please contact


  • Complete the online application (you MUST be on the Hopkins network in order to access the application, otherwise you will see an error).
  • Prepare a letter that outlines your 20% time commitment to the program. Receive a signature on that letter from your department head and submit it with your application, or directly to
  • Successful clinical applicants will be invited to participate in a Shark Tank event. Top pitches from that event will gain entry into the program.
  • Program fees are $5000 for clinical participants and can be covered by the department or other means. Unfortunately, we cannot currently accept tuition reimbursement to cover costs.

Business, design and technical students

  • Please send your cover letter and resume at your earliest convenience to
  • Successful students will be invited to participate in an interview process to gain admission to the program.
  • Admission to the program is followed by a matching process with clinical and other team members.
  • Participation is free for participating students.


2016 Teams

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Videos for Early Autism Diagnosis

EVAS: Autism is typically diagnosed 2.5 years after it can be detected. Earlier diagnosis, facilitated by EVAS (Early Video-guided Autism Screener), results in better outcomes and significant cost savings for the family and payers. EVAS is more accurate than similar screeners because it shows videos that compare behaviors of children without autism to children with autism.

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Pictures of Surgery Worth (More Than) 10000 Words

DEPICTATION: With the rise of electronic medical records, surgeons lost the ability to visually sketch anatomical changes from complex surgeries. Depictation adds the visual nuances of surgery back into the medical record through a drag-and-drop, 3-D visualization tool that allows care providers to comprehensively record and review complex surgeries.

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A Guide That Reduces Over-Prescription of Antibiotics

ANTIBIOTIC NINJA: 50% of antibiotics prescribed in the United States are unnecessary. While guidelines exist for antibiotic use, many clinicians cannot accurately and quickly scroll through encyclopedic recommendations to come up with an actionable diagnosis for their patients. Antibiotic Ninja is a mobile tool that guides users through diagnostic pathways to determine if an antibiotic is necessary for treatment. It also makes dosing recommendations.

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A Single, Mobile View for Patient Status

SYNOPSIS: Clinicians click an electronic health record 4000 times a day in order to view historical and current vital sign and diagnostic information about a patient. Patient Status Dashboard reduces the time clinicians spend navigating an EHR. It also integrates waveform data, to provide an intuitive, mobile status of the patient on one dashboard.

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A Website That Empowers Patients to Guide Treatment

BACKUP DOC: Backup Doc is a simple website that patients can use post-thyroid diagnosis to discover the next best steps for their individualized treatment, based on national guidelines. While providers may not have the time to read, and infer treatment recommendations for individuals from these guidelines, the patients can arrive at the clinic with a simple recommendation to help guide their care.



This fellowship is unlike any other training I have had in my clinical career. Apart from the training to create a healthcare technology start-up, it has exposed me to completely new ways of thinking while designing solutions in the healthcare arena. One of the most valuable parts of this fellowship is the focus on doing customer interviews and then to use the insights gained from the customer interviews to develop our products/ideas.

- Krishnaj Gourab, M.D., Medical Director, Rehabilitation Informatics and Analytics, Hexcite Clinical Fellow Class of 2015

Krishnaj Gourab

I've got to be honest with you, this has taken me completely out of my comfort zone. This is not what I do. And this is the best part of my week the last 16 weeks. It has just been fabulous. It's absolutely fantastic.

- David Efron, M.D., Chief, Acute Care Surgery, Hexcite Clinical Fellow Class of 2016

David Efron


Lifecycle of a TIC-Assisted Technology Start-up

Illustration of the life-cycle of a TIC start-upIllustrated life-cycle of a TIC start-up. View the full-size image.


For more information about the program, application requirements and deadlines, contact Jasmine McNeil at