For a summary of our event and select talks,
please check out Dr. Lee's blogpost!


We #MakeHealth Fest 2015

11 am - 6 pm, Sunday, October 25th, 2015

University of Michigan

Level 4, Palmer Commons

100 Washtenaw Ave, Free Parking in UM Structure off Palmer Drive

12 pm Complimentary lunch available

11 am Exhibits open

3 pm Presentations, beginning with Keynotes

We are excited to announce the 2nd annual We #MakeHealth Fest at the University of Michigan, which is a collaborative event focused on participatory design, innovation, and the creation of a Maker Movement for health. We invite you to share your projects and creations as an exhibitor or a presenter, or to just come and be inspired by the community in the room and our keynote speakers Susannah Fox, Chief Technology Officer of the US Department of Health and Human Services, and Jose Gomez-Marquez and Anna Young of the Little Devices Lab and MakerNurse. 

What is Making?

“Making is fundamental to what it means to be human. We must make, create, and express ourselves to feel whole. There is something unique about making physical things. Things we make are like little pieces of us and seem to embody portions of our soul.” -Mark Hatch

Traditionally, makers are inventors, designers, tinkerers, and computer hackers who develop creative technology solutions. They share their knowledge and technologies with other community members in peer-to-peer learning environments like meet-ups, makerspaces, or large community events.

What is the link between Making and Health?

In the arena of health, patients and caregivers are doing their own version of “making”. Caregivers are hacking kitchen tools to ease the physical burden of caring for an elderly parent; parents of kids with type 1 diabetes are developing Do-It-Yourself mobile technology solutions for remote monitoring of blood sugars; and parents of children with rare diseases are creating rare disease research networks and therapies using social media tools.

“Making” and collaboration by patients and caregivers has resulted in the creation of some of the most innovative health solutions today:

To fix healthcare, we need to infuse it with the maker movement

That is why we are holding this event: to learn about new tools and technologies (wearables, 3D printers, mobile technology) that could be applied to health, to connect with a diverse group of individuals (designers, programmers, tinkerers, patients, caregivers, and healthcare providers), and to create a movement that recognizes that we all can should and want to be MAKERS of health, especially expert patients and caregivers. 

Keynote Speakers

Susannah Fox, Chief Technology Officer of HHS

Susannah Fox is the Chief Technology Officer of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). She is responsible for helping HHS leadership harness the power of data, technology, and innovation to improve the health and welfare of the nation. Together with the IDEA Lab team, she creates opportunities for entrepreneurship across the HHS workforce.

Jose Gomez-Marquez, Director, MIT Little Devices Lab

Jose Gomez-Marquez directs the Little Devices Lab at MIT’s International Design Centre and the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science at MIT. The group aims to lower barriers to medical prototyping by bringing the worlds of health and making together. The lab’s recent initiatives include the MakerNurse Project, a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation supported initiative to harness and discover the stealth ingenuity of nurse making around the country.

Anna Young, Co-Founder Maker Nurse

MakerNurse co-founder Anna Young works from a fundamental belief that, with the right tools, everyday people can use their own ingenuity to create devices that heal. Anna and her team at MIT’s Little Devices Lab have applied years of global experience with the Maker Movement to bring rapid prototyping tools into hospital units to enhance the natural, do-it-yourself problem solving abilities of nurses. These Medical Maker Spaces allow providers to work alongside patients to create DIY health technology solutions for more customized and affordable care. MakerNurse uses Create, a virtual community, for transfer of knowledge among these healthcare makers. 

The Nightscout Project, Patient-Driven Innovation, & the Maker Movement

9:30 am - 12 pm, Monday, October 26th, 2015

University of Michigan

Space 2435, Level 1, North Quad

We're also holding a panel and open discussion on the story of the Nightscout Project, a patient-driven innovation to allow for remote monitoring of glucose levels using existing monitoring devices for people with Type 1 diabetes.  Learn about the history of an open source project that continues to be developed, maintained, and supported by volunteers.  What are the possibilities for research and collaboration with the medical and commercial communities?  What are the controversies associated with "DIY" health technologies?  

Panelists include Joyce Lee, Nancy Benovich Gilby, Liz Kaziunas, Kenneth Stack, Weston Nordgren II, James Wedding, Nate Heintzman, Jose Gomez-Marquez and Anna Young.  

Registration is not required for Monday's symposium, light breakfast will be provided. 

Parking (Hourly/Daily Fee Parking): Public parking is available at the Liberty Square Structure. The entrance is on Washington between State Street and Division, and is a short two-block walk to North Quad, see Google Maps.

Directions: The North Quad building is on the northeast corner of the S. State and E. Washington Street intersection. Space 2435 is on the ground level of the building, right on the corner of S. State Street & E. Washington St. To enter into the Space, go through the wood doors just north of Space 2435 on S. State Street.  At the end of the lobby there is a hallway on the right, with a sign that says "Space 2435." Follow the hallway and you will find Space 2435 on the right.

Join Us!

Since this is an open and collaborative event, there are multiple ways for you to join us to #makehealth! Last year’s inaugural event brought together nearly 300 attendees, presenters and exhibitors with local and national media coverage, read more about #MakeHealth 2014. This year will also be a collaborative and free event for the community passionate about health, technology, and participatory design: truly a one-of-a-kind experience for the community to learn and connect! We'll be featuring speakers, hands-on learning opportunities, and health innovators exhibiting their talents and technologies.

Host a Booth and/or Give a Presentation, fill out the application to be an exhibitor or presenter:

Volunteer, to help the day of the event:

Spread the word, download our press kit:

Register to attend, while not required, this helps us plan for complimentary lunch for exhibitors, speakers, volunteers and all attendees:

Sponsor and pledge your financial support: If you have any questions or would like to provide in-kind donations, reach us at

2015 Planning Committee

Emily Hirschfeld, Clinical Research Associate, University of Michigan Health System

Matt Kenyon, Associate Professor, University of Michigan Stamps School of Art and Design

Joyce Lee, Associate Professor, University of Michigan Medical School/School of Public Health

Scott Olson, Managing Director, M-PED Pediatric Device Consortium at University of Michigan

Emily Puckett Rodgers, Entrepreneurship Program Leader, University of Michigan School of Information

Patricia Abbott, Associate Professor, University of Michigan School of Nursing

Patricia F Anderson, Emerging Technologies Librarian, University of Michigan

Nancy Benovich Gilby, Ehrenberg Director of Entrepreneurship, Clinical Associate Professor, University of Michigan School of Information

Julie Cruz, Project Coordinator, Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship, University of Michigan School of Public Health


This event is possible thanks to the generous support of our sponsors!

Platinum Sponsor


Silver Sponsors