Schneider Electric has launched its Healthcare Crowdsourcing Challenge, which is open to U.S. professional engineers and teams with engineers to explore the potential of the internet of things (IoT) and smart edge devices in hospital electrical distribution.

The contest is focused on better defining the needs and potential impacts of the IoT and smart devices on the design, monitoring, analytics and maintenance of electrical distribution systems in hospitals.

In simple terms, Schneider Electric hopes to foster innovations for better designs and values while reducing costs.

The submissions period has already begun. From June 26 to August 11, judges will provide commentary on the ideas. It is unclear whether participants receiving commentary will be able to resubmit based on judge feedback; however, Schneider Electric does specify that participants can edit and add additional documentation to ideas until the challenge deadline.

Aug. 11, 2017 is the submissions deadline, and a panel of industry experts will evaluate the ideas and select winners by Aug. 31, 2017. Schneider Electric will announce the winners by Sept. 20. 2017.

Participants can submit their ideas at the Healthcare Crowdsourcing Challenge webpage.

Schneider has provided an outline of the submissions process. Participants will need to submit the following:

  • A list of well-defined stakeholders and needs that relate to the challenge
  • A list of well-defined use-cases that meet unique needs of these stakeholders. Use cases shall include description of how the need will be met, business value, data and any algorithm that might be required.
    • If the use-cases impact the design of the IDF/MDF closet, include HVAC and power requirements.
  • A one-line diagram documenting the electrical distribution system including both power infrastructure and IoT smart devices, based on your creativity.
    • Incorporation of the smart edge devices into the electrical distribution design, one-line and system specification.
  • If the use-cases impact the patient room include drawings showing the location and specification of devices.
  • Provide Return on Investment for each use-case based on hard or soft returns, including any impact to day to day facility management or operations. Show how these returns were calculated.

“Technologies like IoT, Big Data and smart edge devices present unique challenges and opportunities for the healthcare sector," said Aamir Paul in a press release. Paul is senior vice president, U.S. Operations, Schneider Electric. "We’ve always been focused on using collaborative approaches to solve the issues facing the industry today—and in the future.”

Winning teams will be presented at an American Society for Healthcare (ASHE) webinar and through ASHE publications. In addition to receiving recognition from both Schneider Electric’s North America Leadership and the ASHE, a total prize pool of $20,000 will be available for up to three winning teams.

For more, see Schneider Electric's FAQ.