"The Strong Hand" project
Together with both private and public parties IPU is participating to the development of ‘The Strong Hand’ in order to give rheumatic sufferers a power supplement to compensate for decreasing strength of their hands. The project is based on participatory innovation, and rheumatic patients have tested a first mock-up of ‘The Strong Hand’.
The aim of ‘The Strong Hand’ project is to develop a device for rheumatic patients together with rheumatic sufferers and their therapists, so that the users can become more self-sufficient, experience an increase in the quality of their everyday life, and stay longer on the labour market. The purpose of the device is to add/increase the power of the fingers, needed when performing simple grips, lifts and movements, etc. The idea is not to develop a device to help at all types of tasks, but to focus on the tasks that the rheumatic sufferers perceive as particularly strenuous today.
IPU’s role is to be responsible for the product development and the detailed design of the actual device, which includes ensuring the linkage between the user statements (demands and wishes for the product) and the functionality, construction and design. In this work IPU utilizes its long-time experience within development for the nursing and health sector and its expertise within medical engineering.
In recent years, IPU has assisted Invencon ApS, the assigner of the project, in the very early clarification and preliminary development work, and on this basis elaborated alternative concepts and designed mock-ups with the purpose of entering into dialogue with possible interested parties of the product and the project. On the basis of this work, among other tasks, the Regional Fund of Southern Denmark now supports the elaboration of a development project. In this project IPU continues to play an important role concerning the central development work.
The project is carried out in cooperation with Invencon ApS, Gigthospitalet i Gråsten (the rheumatic hospital in Gråsten), SPIRE Participatory Innovation Research Centre at the University of Southern Denmark, the ‘Occupational Therapist Education’ at the Southern University of Denmark, Linak A/S et al. The time frame of the project, which began in June 2011, is two years, and the total financial frame is DKK 21.5 million. IPU participates in the project in order to further increase its competences within participatory innovation and development of medical engineering devices.