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Triangle Health Innovation Challenge


Bringing together the Triangle’s best to build innovative solutions for improving healthcare

THInC 2016 Results     Learn More     Watch Our Video!

What is the Triangle Health Innovation Challenge?

The Triangle Health Innovation Challenge (THInC) brings together students and young professionals (engineers, clinicians, designers, business people and others) to tackle and build innovative solutions for the biggest challenges in health and healthcare. Organized by the Duke School of Medicine Innovation and Entrepreneurship Activity Group, and the Carolina Health Entrepreneurship Initiative, THInC brings together the academic, industry, pharmaceutical, startup and student communities to collaborate to solve problems of immense importance.

At THInC, you’ll join a team that’s tackling a specific “pain point” in health. Over the next 48 hours, you’ll work together to construct technological solutions to address your team’s problem, and in the process, help raise the standard of healthcare. You’ll hear from thought leaders, work with clinical, technical and business mentors, and stay well fed on local fare and copious coffee. On Sunday, each team will pitch their solutions to our panel of judges, and a grand prize winner will be selected!

Over the last two years, THInC has brought together 286 participants from across the Triangle and beyond. Winning solutions have included a wearable physical therapy activity tracker, an algorithm for smart patient-specific clinic scheduling, a virtual reality tool for veterans with PTSD, an app for preventing heart failure readmissions and an EHR-integrated notification app for the Apple Watch.

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THInC 2016 Results

The second Triangle Health Innovation Challenge took place on September 16-18, 2015 at the Trent Semans Center for Health Education at Duke University. The event brought together 159 participants from across the Triangle and beyond. 35 “pain points” in health were pitched, 25 solutions were proposed, and 21 teams formed to build innovative healthcare solutions. Over the next 48 hours, participants met with 30 expert clinical, business, and technical mentors; consumed over 900 cups of coffee; and worked late into the night to build and test their prototype solution, develop a business plan, and refine their final pitches. On Sunday, the 21 teams pitched their products to our panel of judges, who awarded prizes for the best solutions.

By The Numbers

159 Attendees

  • 21% Developers
  • 13% Entrepreneurs
  • 25% Scientists
  • 10% Businesspeople
  • 54% Engineers
  • 21% Clinicians
  • 7% Designers
  • 8% Other
  • 6% Health Professions Students
  • 23% Engineering Graduate Students
  • 36% Undergraduate Students
  • 3% Business Students
  • 19% Other Graduate Students
  • 14% Young Professionals (including clinicians)

36 Expert Mentors

  • 10 Clinical / Idea Validation Mentors
  • 14 Business, Technical and Design Mentors
  • 12 Practice Pitch Mentors



Pilot: Reducing heart failure readmissions through at-home weight, blood pressure and symptom monitoring
Winner of the Grand Prize ($4000 cash prize)


CareChoice:  Triage platform to shift patients from the ED to Urgent Care and reduce wait times
Winner of the Third Place prize ($1000 cash prize)



LotusVirtual reality therapy for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder
Winner of the Runner-up Prize ($2000 cash prize) and the Janssen Mental Health Prize ($500 cash prize)

Winners were selected by our esteemed judging panel: Dr. Blake Long (Mosaic Health Solutions), Dr. Alan Metz (Quintiles), and Dr. Michael Gunn (Duke Health)


We’re thankful to our academic and corporate sponsors for allowing us to hold THInC 2016.

Interested in becoming a sponsor for THInC 2017? Read about corporate and academic sponsorship opportunities (2017 documents coming soon) and get in touch. Sponsors have the opportunity to showcase their products/APIs, recruit new talent, and demonstrate their commitment to healthcare innovation in the Triangle and beyond!

Our THInC 2015 sponsors included Mosaic Health Solutions, Validic, Metlife, Forecast Health, OrthoWilmington, the Duke Institute for Health Innovation, the Duke Pratt School of Engineering, the UNC Eschelman Institute for Innovation, and the Health 2.0 NC Triangle Chapter. We thank our previous sponsors for their generous support!

Media Mentions

“It was really cool to connect with people with similar passions and to watch people from different backgrounds come together on a single project”


“The ingenuity and quality of the solutions that were presented on Sunday afternoon was stunning”


“The Triangle Health Innovation Challenge was organized by Duke and UNC-Chapel Hill students to bring together talent from around the region to solve pressing issues in health care.”

“Brilliant healthcare app created for competition”

Hacking for the
Future of Medicine

“All it takes is an idea and 60 seconds to show others the path to explore how a “pain point” becomes nothing more than an opportunity to innovate.”

Frequently Asked Questions

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Will there be a THInC 2017?

Definitely! We’ll be back next year, bigger and better! If you have ideas for how we can improve, let us know! Stay tuned for information about next year’s event!

How can I get involved with THInC team?

If you’d like to join us in planning, promoting and executing the next Triangle Health Innovation Challenge, email us at! We would love to have you on our team!

What should I do between now and next year?

Keep your eyes open for things that are broken in healthcare. We encourage you to join the Health 2.0 NC Triangle group to participate in other similar events and meet similarly minded people in the area — all are welcome! In addition,  There are a ton of great entrepreneurial events in the Triangle — we love reading ExitEvent to stay in the loop and hear about them!

What type of projects can we work on?

You’re welcome to tackle any project related to health or healthcare. When selecting a project to pitch or to work on, remember that you should pick something for which you and your team can develop a prototype solution (typically an app, a website-based service, a workflow or a relatively simple physical device) within 48 hours.

Our Team

Tanmay GokhaleCofounder and Director; MD/PhD Student, Biomedical Engineering, Duke University
Luke SolimanCofounder and Director; Business and Chemistry Major, UNC
Sarah MillerCofounder and Director; Chemistry and Business Major, UNC
Steven DoerstlingCofounder and Director; Public Health and Nutrition Major, UNC
Rui DaiMD/PhD Student, Duke University
Michael LinBiochemistry Major, UNC
Katy SmithPhD Student, Health Systems Engineering, NC State
Elliot KrauseBiomedical Engineering Major, UNC
Rida ShamsHealth Policy and Management Major, UNC
Mihir PershadBiochemistry Major, UNC; Member of 2015 Winning Team
Kirin KhanMedical Student, Duke University

Our Advisory Board

Murali DoraiswamyProfessor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University
David RubinowProfessor and Chair of Psychiatry; Director, UNC Innovation and Health Care System Transformation,UNC
Mary KlotmanProfessor and Chair of Medicine, Duke University
Blake LongChief Clinical Officer of Mosaic Health Solutions
Shawn GomezAssociate Professor of Biomedical Engineering, NC State University
Dhruv PatelDirector of Investor Relations, Council for Entrepreneurial Development