MUSC, Citadel collaborate on health innovation initiative

Photo: The lobby of Bastin Hall, the home of the Tommy and Victoria Baker School of Business

As seen in the Charleston Regional Business Journal, by Teri Griffis

The Medical University of South Carolina’s Department of Surgery Human-Centered Design Program and The Citadel Tommy and Victoria Baker School of Business Innovation Lab will collaborate on a joint effort.

The program will create a core team of medical students, residents and Citadel cadets and students who will develop innovative products focused on improving the health of state residents, MUSC said in a news release.

Both programs similarly promote innovative thinking. The BSB Innovation Lab focuses on teaching students the value of ground-breaking thinking and offers then the chance and guidance to invent and helm business ideas, build out a business plan and pitch ideas to investors.

MUSC’s HCD program was founded to develop original ways to solve unmet surgical and medical needs. The program is led by Joshua Kim and was established under the leadership of chief of surgical oncology Dr. David Mahvi and vice chair of research Michael Yost, Ph.D.

The two programs were brought together in March 2020 when the country faced protective mask shortages, particularly N-95 versions, as the pandemic picked up pace.

During that time, Kim’s team of biomedical engineers and medical professionals developed plans for 3D-printed masks. The BSB Innovation Lab then collaborated with MUSC to print more than 500 masks to help to resolve the region’s shortage.

“Through this new partnership, we can seamlessly innovate a design, develop a business plan and produce products that improve patient care,” said Mahvi.

By coming together, the partnership promotes collaboration, academic growth and learning opportunities students may not have experienced in their respective schools. Residents and medical students are immersed in business training and entrepreneurship skills, while business students are exposed to the health care system.

By working together, Capt. James Bezjian, director of the Innovation Lab and an assistant professor of strategy and entrepreneurship in the Baker School of Business, said the schools are able to work on projects that have “life-changing” capabilities.

“The relationship the BSB Innovation Lab built with MUSC during the height of the pandemic provided an opportunity for us to partner and continue working toward improving the lives of medical professionals and the patients they take care of,” Bezjian said.