EAST LANSING, Mich. — When Michigan State University (MSU) professor Laura Bix thinks about a healthcare packaging, she thinks about the context (sometimes chaotic) surrounding the patient and caregiver and how those impact interactions with the package which, in turn can impact the quality of care delivered.
Historically, the siloed nature of the system did not afford the opportunity for healthcare providers and packaging professionals to sit down and discuss challenges and objectives for care.
That’s why she and MaryKay Smith, Director of MSU’s Learning and Assessment Center (LAC), began working with professionals from the packaging industry to create the Healthcare Packaging Immersion Experience (HcPIE) nearly a decade ago.
Hosted by the MSU School of Packaging, this year's HcPIE will take place October 9-10, 2019 at the James B. Henry Center in East Lansing. A hallmark of the event that audiences have come to expect are active learning and immersive experiences that provide powerful lessons for all that attend.
This year’s event will feature a simulation filmed from the perspective of the patient that will be projected on the MSU Planetarium’s 360-degree dome. That same night speakers from NASA will talk about packaging for other worlds.
“The overarching theme is that context dramatically impacts your ability to interact with package designs,” Bix said. “Whether your packaging in space or for paramedics as they ride down the road delivering critical care, packaging designers must consider how the context that surrounds them impacts providers’ abilities and behaviors. We must design things that facilitate effective delivery of care.”
In addition, this year will highlight students who were funded from proceeds generated by previous year’s conferences. The conference is beneficial to training future professionals as it provides: a stage for students to present their research to an interested and relevant audience, networking opportunities, a bully pulpit to catalyze change in packaging process and design focused on improving health outcomes, and a mechanism for gathering feedback regarding the relevance of the research and emerging needs related to healthcare packaging.
“Our goal, through this event, is to generate a dialog that creates questions and ideas that motivate people to catalyze changes that improve health,” Bix said. “We want to make a difference.”