Children's Hospital Colorado's Center for Innovation has some exciting departmental news: Dr. Robin Deterding has been named as Medical Director; Dr. Joel Friedlander and Dr. Ken Liechty have been named Associate Medical Directors; Jeanine Rundquist, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, and Heidi McNeely, MSN, RN, PCNS-BC, have been named Nursing Innovation Ambassadors; and Jerrod Milton, RPh, MBA, has been named Operations Ambassador.
“The Center for Innovation represents the realization of our strategic plan to embrace innovation and support our 10,000 innovators at Children’s Colorado as we uncover powerful, life-changing ideas in the pursuit of health and well-being for children,” said Gil Peri, Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer. “I am most proud that Children’s Colorado is not just facilitating the exploration of innovation, rather we are 100% committed to this program through the development of a dedicated innovation lab, strong professional education tracks, incubators, accelerators, business mentorship and more.”
Leading the way with passion
These team members will share their passion for and expertise in research and innovation to help the Center for Innovation fulfill its promise to provide opportunities for innovators to come together to develop groundbreaking ideas that will enrich and save lives through better technology and healthcare.
In her role as Medical Director, Dr. Deterding will oversee the idea cultivation and vetting process, engage faculty and staff in developing innovative solutions to child health problems, lead the clinical vetting team to assess ideas for recommendation to the innovation steering and investment committees and help to foster external partnership innovation opportunities.
As Chief of Pediatric Pulmonary Medicine and Medical Director of the Breathing Institute, Dr. Deterding's clinical and research interests are in rare lung disease, with a special focus on creating international clinical research networks and biomarkers to define disease and outcomes.
“I've been at Children's Colorado for over 25 years and have seen the innovative spirit of the staff and faculty. I'm so excited about the Center for Innovation, which will allow us to capture and enhance our innovative potential in all of our missions,” Dr. Deterding said.
Bringing their expertise together
Working alongside Dr. Deterding on the Center for Innovation's leadership team, Drs. Friedlander and Liechty, McNeely, Rundquist and Milton will work with team members from across the organization to create pipeline innovations for submission through the online web portal, serve on the Center for Innovation's clinical leadership committee to assess and recommend innovations for further development, measure and track progress on pipeline innovations, and help cultivate interest in innovation across disciplines at Children's Colorado.
Dr. Friendlander has been at Children's Colorado for almost five years, has a special interest in the multi-disciplinary development of novel devices, techniques and efficiency workflows in all aspects of pediatrics. He believes the Center for Innovation should be a resource for everyone at Children's Colorado, no matter their discipline. “I'm excited to be part of the team dedicated to helping others think and develop their ideas and watch them change the future of medicine,” Dr. Friedlander said.
Innovation is part of Dr. Liechty's world every day at Children's Colorado. In his tissue regeneration work he is using the fetal response to injury to model and develop strategies to promote regeneration in numerous tissues. He's also involved in small molecule drug discovery strategies to improve responses to injury and subsequent outcome as well as innovative approaches to fetal surgery and congenital anomalies using 3D printing and bio materials. “I'm thrilled to be part of the Center for Innovation to help develop the strong clinical and science expertise here at Children's Colorado to improve patient care and outcomes everywhere,” Dr. Liechty said.
As Magnet Program Director for the past 13 year, Jeanine Rundquist said she has seen the simplest of ideas impact patients and families. “Nurses are innovative by nature and often have to create 'work-arounds' to meet patient needs. I hope to see the nurses, and all clinicians, use the Center to spread their ideas and potentially make them best practices instead of a 'work-arounds.'”
Rundquist said she is excited to align the work that will happen within the Center for Innovation with Children's Colorado's mission, vision and values.
As co-Nursing Innovation Ambassador with Rundquist, Clinical Nurse Specialist and “lifelong learner” Heidi McNeely wants to encourage nurses to think about all the possibilities to improve patient care and the practice of nursing.
“We have so many talented and smart individuals with great ideas; I want to be able to help foster those ideas and encourage staff to take their innovations to the next level,” McNeely said. “The Center for Innovation will help provide the structure and support that nurses don't often have experience with to take a great idea from a thought to reality. This is the start of a time to think big, be creative and to not let fear or reluctance get in our way.”
During his 25-year tenure at Children's Colorado, Vice President of Operations Jerrod Milton has seen a lot of innovation happen. “I think innovation has always been at the core of Children's mission,” Milton said. “I've seen innovation happen that's really been transformative in terms of diagnostics and therapeutics.” Milton said he's seen how nitric oxide, for example, has transformed the treatment of pulmonary hypertension in neonates.
“This place is full of brilliant minds,” Milton said. “People have great ideas and we want to tap into them.”
Visit The Children's Hospital Colorado Center for Innovation to see how we provide an opportunity for team-member-innovators to come together to develop groundbreaking ideas that will enrich and save lives through better technology and healthcare.