Pitching Novel Ideas for Sustainable Solutions

Doctors do incredible things; they treat disease and improve the health of their patient populations.  Unfortunately, this has come at a price. Literally.

Health care spending is quickly becoming unsustainable for our society.  While the rise in spending is multifactorial, several organizations, such as Choosing Wisely and Lown Institute, were born to help physicians reduce misuse and overuse in their daily practice.  Reducing sources of overuse lowers overall costs and can improve patient health and satisfaction through the Value=Quality/Cost paradigm.

In line with these goals, the Student High Value Care (sHVC) Committee was formed in 2015 under the guidance of Dr. Harry Cho, Director of Quality and Patient Safety and Chair of the High Value Care Committee, and Dr. Celine Goetz. Students in the committee formed small teams and choose a point of misuse or overuse in the hospital they are passionate about fixing.  Under mentorship from physicians in the Department of Hospital Medicine, students fully identified a problem, formed an effective intervention and implemented the intervention to directly change the practice.  In addition to team meetings, students attend bi-weekly didactic sessions where they learn the essentials of high value care projects.  These didactic sessions were solidified into a formal medical school Nexus course (High Value Care) in fall 2016.

On December 6, the new teams who joined sHVC this fall presented their project ideas to a panel of judges in shark tank fashion during sHVC Second Annual Pitch Day. The teams were judged on potential impact, novelty and feasibility of intervention, and presentation.  This year, four teams competed for a $1,000 Judge’s Prize and a $500 Audience Prize.  The competing teams were:

  • Lipase Only, Please!—Kathryn Marqueen, Adam Reisman, Taylor Thomas and Anthony Yang
  • Reducing Overtreatment of Asymptomatic Hypertension— Sara Pasik, Sophia Chiu, Catherine Sinfield, John Yang, and Aakash Keswani
  • Resident Quality Initiative: Increasing Inpatient Ambulation by Use of Fitbits— Sigal Israilov, Jasmine Race, Aishwarya Raja and Yu Sakai
  • Dump the Docusate!— Parth Trivedi, Sudeh Izadmehr, Luke Waggoner, Kira Xie and Daniella Schocken

“Lipase Only, Please!” was the winner of the $500 Audience Prize. “Reducing Overtreatment of Asymptomatic Hypertension” and “Lipase Only, Please!” tied for the $1,000 Judge’s Prize.

Pitch day is a great opportunity for all participating teams to receive crucial feedback on their projects and raise awareness for their interventions.  Following Pitch Day, each team will implement their intervention in the hospital.  Pitch Day was live streamed by the Icahn School of Medicine Facebook page (forgive the buzzing in the video; the sound is fixed 20 minutes in).

If students are interested in participating in high value care projects, reach out to SinaiSHVC@gmail.com and we can discuss how to get involved.

The Student High Value Care team is hosting its third annual pitch day on Tuesday December 5. The event will feature faculty judges that include Andrew Dunn, MD; Deb Korenstein, MD; David Muller, MD, FACP; and Beth Raucher, MD. Visit the sHVC event page for more information.


John Di Capua is an MD Candidate, Class of 2019 at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.  He is interested in research, value based care, education, community outreach, and innovation. He is also engaged in medical device design and development.  He received a BS in Materials Science and Engineering and a MHS in Environmental Health Science from Johns Hopkins University before matriculating to medical school.

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