MedStar Inventor Services


Welcome to MedStar Inventor Services

We work hand-in-hand with MedStar associates to transform your innovative ideas and discoveries into commercial products and services that advance health and improve the patient and family experience.

You have lots of good ideas but that’s only one part of developing a product. MedStar Inventor Services will help you determine if your idea does not already exist, bring in experts to evaluate the clinical need, assess the market for the product, get it through the burdensome patent process, negotiate the terms of the license, and monitor the agreement to make sure the licensee delivers. All this at no cost to you AND if your product makes it to market you get 50% of revenue after expenses are recouped.

You can email your idea here or, if your idea is further developed, submit the Invention Disclosure Form below.

Is your idea something you’re using at work that could be transferred or taught to other MedStar associates? Visit our MInnovations website to submit your idea or browse the MInnovations gallery. Visit our MInnovations website

So let’s get started!

Is Your Idea an Invention?

*** Please note, to save for later you must copy the provided link. Emails will not be sent out for this form.***

Here’s how the INVENT℠ process works and how MedStar supports you

The first step is to think about your idea as a product. 

  • What problem does it solve?
  • Who would use it?
  • Who would buy it?
  • How much would it cost?
  • What is the value proposition (cost/time savings, better treatment outcomes, increased income), etc.?

This video and questionnaire will help you think about things to consider in formulating and refining your idea into an invention.  Give it a descriptive title (i.e. "Rotary Cuff Tear Rehabilitation Device" not "Stephen's Wonder Gizmo") and do a web search on that title.  What did you find?


Try to describe your idea in as much detail as possible.  Be creative. Draw pictures (you don't have to be an artist), use others' pictures to illustrate features of your idea.  You have two choices of submitting your idea:

Unfortunately a good idea alone does not make a great product.  In order for MedStar Inventor Services to commercialize your idea, we assess

  • Market size
  • Intellectual property space (patents, copyrights and trademarks)
  • Competitive product landscape.

Your idea needs to offer a significant competitive advantage to any company that might manufacture, market and sell our inventions.

MedStar Inventor Services works with Cleveland Clinic Innovations to commercialize MedStar Inventions.  Check out the box to the right and learn more about Cleveland Clinic Innovation and their INVENT (SM) Process.

Everyone can invent, it just starts with a good idea.


Brain FORCE mTBI Screening Tool


Alexander W. Dromerick, MD
Director of the Neuroscience Research Center and the Director of the Comprehensive Stroke Center, MedStar National Rehabilitation Network

Learn how a concussion screening prototype became a combination light-weight plastic grip device & an iPad app. It is now being used to screen college athletes for concussion by MedStar Sports Medicine.

Read the Story

Face-To-Face Rehabilitation App


Jodi Barth, PT
MedStar National Rehabilitation Network

Learn how MedStar Inventor Services helped therapists take their facial palsy treatment from idea to prototype to the App Store.

Read the Story
Get the Face2Face app


MedStar Health is a founding partner in the Global Healthcare Innovations Alliance with Cleveland Clinic Innovations (CCI), one of the premiere technology commercialization organizations in the world. CCI’s experience in bringing new products to the marketplace gives MedStar Inventor Services a critical edge. You can find a copy of the MedStar Intellectual Property policy here. To assist you in understanding it, we have created an IP Policy Guide. Read a past post about the launch of the alliance here.

Watch how Cleveland Clinic Innovations (CCI), the commercialization arm of Cleveland Clinic, works with caregivers to transform their ideas into innovations. The video walks aspiring inventors through submitting an idea, and gives a brief overview of CCI's INVENT™ process.

Invent Diaphragm Assist Device

Medstar Inventor Services 2013

William Krimsky, MD, Director of The Center for Interventional Pulmonology at MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center

See how MedStar Inventor Services took Dr. William Krimsky's idea for the Invent Diaphragm Assist Device to market.

Read the Story


High Frequency Nasal Cannula

Morarji Peesay

Morarji Peesay, MD
Neonatologist, Associate Professor And Faculty Member Of Division Of Neonatal Prenatal Medicine At The MedStar Georgetown University Hospital In Washington, DC

In partnership with MedStar Inventor Services, he created an inventive prototype called HIFI-NC (High Frequency Nasal Cannula).

Read the Story

MedStar Innovatively Prepares its Surgeons for Thyroidectomy

Erin Felger

Erin Felger, MD
Endocrine Surgery and Thyroid Cancer, MedStar Washington Hospital Center

Dr. Felger and researchers at Simskin LLC jointly developed the Thyroid Surgical Trainer, a detailed training model to simulate multiple thyroid procedures.

Read the Story

The Influence Center

Influence Course
influence course

Influence and Creativity Courses MI2 solves problems by helping people innovate and think differently by offering consults and curricula on Creative Thinking and Innovation; Influence and Persuasion; Complex Systems Theory and Resilience; Design Thinking; and Human Factors (systems engineering, system safety and cognitive psychology).

Design Thinking

Girl and stickies board

Design is often referred to as a plan to get from the current state to the desired state. Design Thinking encompasses the cognitive processes and tools that allow us to accomplish this in an effective manner.  How can design thinking lead to innovation in healthcare?

The MedStar Institute for Innovation has produced a web-based course with videos from leading experts from the field of Design Thinking. The videos explain in detail what design thinking is, how to conduct design research and prototype, and how to apply these skills to challenges in health care.  The course was produced by Doug Solomon (Senior Fellow at MI2), Mik Pietrzak (Senior Fellow  at MI2), and Brittany Singhas-Weinberg.

MedStar has developed this course in design thinking for health professionals. The course is available to all MedStar Associates by contacting us here. If you are a nonprofit interested in using this course, please submit your request here.

  • Design and Thinking
    A fun 2.5 minute video by Muris Media to give you a sense of Design Thinking
  • What is Design Thinking?
    An overview of the Stanford/IDEO concept of Design Thinking

The Process of Design Thinking with David Webster, Partner, IDEO

Putting it all together -- David Webster of IDEO describes the overall Design Thinking process. He is joined by Steve Kinsey, Director of MedStar Inventor Services and our Course Guide Brittany Weinberg to discuss how inventors can leverage the IDEO Design Thinking process to catalyze innovation in the healthcare environment. IDEO is a leading design and innovation consulting company.

This session reflects on the parallels between the IDEO process and our work at MedStar.  However, some key differences exist.  For example, at MedStar our designers are our frontline people and often have the “empathy” (user understanding) needed to begin the design.   The discussion helps identify some differences and clarifies how to apply Design Thinking in healthcare.


Thinking with Barry Katz, Fellow, IDEO

Success in design is rarely achieved without understanding what made others succeed (or fail) in the past.  The rich history of design thinking and its impact on the industrial age provide abundant examples. Barry Katz, a renown expert of Design Thinking and author on the subject, explains how Design Thinking as we know it today was developed over a century ago when designers were innovating approaches to the new age of mass production. Barry, who works with IDEO, California College of the Arts, and Stanford University, provides insight into the definition of Design Thinking, the drivers for the emergence of design thinking and lessons learned from history.


Brainstorming with Doug Solomon, IDEO Fellow and Senior Fellow at MI2

Doug Solomon pulls us into the world of brainstorming - an important way that design thinkers generate ideas – lots of ideas. 

Brainstorming, when structured properly, can be applied as a tool generating ideas addressing a design problem. Though not a panacea, it is a supplemental tool to quickly create numerous ideas for consideration. Doug Solomon explores individual and team brainstorming – providing an understanding of the advantages of different techniques. A special focus on methods used at IDEO will guide innovator through this process.



Design Research with Lucie Richter, IDEO alumna and Adjunct Professor at California College of the Arts

“Did anyone ask the people who would be using this?” A question we seem to frequently ask ourselves. One of the most important parts of the Design Process is the early informative research that is (or should be) accomplished before product or service design begins. This process informs the fundamental “empathy” for the projected users of the intended product. Great products and devices reflect a true understanding of the users.

Lucie Richter was a key member of the IDEO team designing medication delivery systems for insulin dependent diabetics and also patients with severe arthritis for the pharmaceutical industry.  Her expert insights will enhance your ability to gain important information for the design process through keen observation and interview techniques. Her vignettes of real cases bring key points to light.


Design for Behavior Change with David Featherstonhaugh

Can design thinking make a difference to our patients? David Featherstonhaugh provides key insights for the application of design thinking to behavior change including:

  • How to even start thinking about designing for behavior change?
  • How behavior change and design thinking relate?
  • How to effectively measure behavior change?


Rapid and Nimble Prototyping With Andre Yousefi, Co-founder, Lime Lab

Andre Yousefi shares how:

  • Prototyping is informed by design research and brainstorming.
  • Rough prototypes made from rudimentary materials have multiple advantages.
  • 3D printing from CAD programs has transformed rapid prototyping and is likely to be even more of a factor in the future.

Although this session is focused on physical prototyping, we will learn that prototyping can also be used for many other nonphysical things, such as concepts, software, movies, processes, and problem-solving in general.


Prototyping – Beyond the Physical with Kara Harrington

Prototyping is a key element of the innovation process. It allows us to see and sometimes feel something tangible and helps us communicate ideas. Prototyping is not only for physical objects, but also for project ideas, services, software, and other nonphysical products – such as the “story board” before filming a movie. Kara Harrington discusses the application of prototyping techniques focusing on non-physical concepts. 



Resources on Design Thinking

Past Health for America at MedStar Health Design Work

Health for America (HFA) at MedStar Health, a past fellowship program embedded in the MedStar Institute for Innovation (MI2) from 2015 to mid-2018, engaged early career professionals in distinctive learning experiences centered on health, design, entrepreneurship and leadership. It challenged them to create an innovative solution in an assigned domain during an 11-month program, sometimes among other work. Past HFA blog posts tagged with design showcase the importance of design thinking to the fellows’ learning and contributions.

Each year the fellowship started with an exploration phase that deeply immersed the fellows in understanding the assigned domain (e.g., diabetes, telehealth). A key activity of the exploration phase was simulation. Grounded in the principles of design thinking, HFA simulation activities were tailored to build the fellows’ empathy for the patients and/or survivors with whom they would design their solution. Defined as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another, empathy is a useful tool for innovators who seek to create a solution that is both novel and relevant to the end user.

For the 2016 to 2017 program, the HFA fellows were challenged to create a novel solution that improved stroke care. The creative simulation experiences they developed were described in a report to hopefully inspire other healthcare professionals to create and conduct their own simulation exercises as a means to further encourage patient-centered care and innovation. Read the MI2 HFA report, “Simulating the Stroke Patient and Survivor Experience: Designing Solutions with Empathy.”

Other Resources



The Influence Center, founded May 1, 2015, is part of the MedStar Institute for Innovation at MedStar Health. Influence is a primary function in health care and is a learnable skill that involves applying proven principles and techniques to generate positive behavior, create stronger relationships, improve communication, and produce feelings of satisfaction and engagement. It transcends everything we do, from clinical care to performance transformation to professional leadership, to research and education.

The Influence Center impacts other health-related areas including:

  • Patient engagement
  • Risk Management
  • Philanthropy
  • Government Affairs
  • Quality & Safety
  • Patient Adherence
  • Staff Satisfaction
  • Learning and Education

Influence is a universal skill that remains evergreen and can be applied across healthcare applications, ranging from patient experience to copywriting. The Center offers the following services to MedStar Health and to external clients:

Any communication can be completely transformed by an Influence Consultation. Your email, presentation, flyer, job posting, and more will become more powerful, effective, and memorable. Influence Consults utilizes scientific principles adapted from Dr. Robert Cialdini, Influence author, professor, and expert. For insight into Cialdini's 6 Scientific Principles of Influence, watch this video:

The Center for Health Influence & Engagement offers presentations, inservices, and workshops to MedStar Health as well as outside clients. Each presentation, etc. is tailored to the specific needs of the  audience.

The Impact & Influence Course is an exclusive benefit to MedStar Health associates. Absolutely everything you do in healthcare can be optimized with influence, which is why MedStar Health doctors, nurses, and more have access to this course. Learn more here.

Coming soon!

To explore research opportunities with the MI2 Center for Health Influence & Engagement, please contact us here.

Coming soon!

Simfluence™ - Influence in Simulation Training at MedStar SiTEL - Stay tuned!


The MI2 Impact & Influence Course is divided into a series of modules, each with a deeper dive into content areas related to influence. Each module has a series of videos that are easily digestible (5-10 minutes) and actionable (action items you can use immediately) chunks. The Influence Principles featured in this course include Instant Rapport, nonverbal communication and body language, and how to influence groups. The MI2 Impact & Influence Course helps you:

  • Effortlessly improve your relationships
  • Optimize your time with patients
  • Work smarter and quicker, leaving time to do things you enjoy
  • Improve employee morale and patient experience
  • Practice these techniques at home to improve your personal life as well

To begin, please email us here.


Innovators at MedStar Health

Innovation is everywhere at MedStar Health. Here are just a few examples of our innovators.

Please nominate other MedStar Health associates to be highlighted by emailing [email protected]

Meet our Innovators

MI2 Sense

Are you a MedStar Health associate?

Sign up for Mi2Sense.

How can a Social Network help us work together?

We all know that two heads are better than one. Add MI2’s mission (catalyze innovation that advances health) and mantra ("Think differently"), and what we get is an innovative approach to collaboration: Mi2Sense.

Mi2Sense is a secure social collaboration platform that engages MedStar Health users and helps them improve their work processes, collaborations, information sharing, and more. The platform provides MedStar Health employees with a familiar layout (similar to LinkedIn and Facebook) and an efficient, effective means to communicate, collaborate, and innovate.

Why use it?

Mi2Sense transcends the capabilities of other social media outlets in that the bonus features, such as projects, town hall meetings, assignments with due dates, and challenges, allow users to:

  • Tap into expert knowledge
  • Store and sort through important data
  • View real time responses, updates, and meetings
  • Use the power of the Mi2sense community to stretch thinking and generate ideas that would otherwise be untapped

Other benefits of Mi2Sense:

  • It is the ultimate crowdsourcing tool
  • With email, you have to know who you want to interrupt
  • It eliminates many of the frustrations that people have with email
    • Hitting send too early
    • Finding old emails
    • Managing documents
    • Managing lists

Human Factors

Contact Us

Have a question? Ask our human factors experts a question.

EHR User-Centered Design Framework

Learn more about electronic health record vendor usability processes.

Center for Human Factors Annual Report

Learn more about our mission, services and accomplishments.


Our research team focuses on leveraging theory to conduct applied research that addresses critical safety problems in healthcare. With unparalleled access to a 10-hospital healthcare system, a diverse range of clinical expertise, and expertise in human factors, applied cognition, and safety engineering we are the nation's innovative leader in human factors and healthcare research.


We provide customized usability consultations and testing throughout the product development process. Through MedStar Health, our usability experts have direct access to healthcare domain specialists and end users in a wide array of clinical settings and use environments.




Whether you are a healthcare organization looking for an objective hazard analysis, a medical device manufacturer in need of an FDA 510(k) human factors evaluation, or a professional organization simply looking for a human factors consult, our team has the expertise to assist.


Are you interested in learning more about human factors within your daily life or applied to your healthcare environment? We offer education opportunities for clinicians, medical students and trainees interested in human factors as well as human factors experts interested in healthcare.


About MedStar Simulation Training & Education Lab


MedStar Simulation Training & Education Lab (SiTEL) designs and delivers online education, experiential learning and performance support tools for all roles across the MedStar Health system.

Our core areas of expertise:

Clinical Simulation Services operates simulation centers in Washington and Baltimore and a mobile simulation lab. We also provide in situ simulation services throughout the system, and operate a large American Health Association certification program in Pediatric Advanced Life Support, Advanced Cardio Life Support and Basic Life Support training.

Learning Research & Design creates original learning content using a blend of video production, graphic arts and animation, serious game development and instructional design.

Learning Technologies develops and maintains systems and tools that power learning at MedStar.

Clinical Education is composed of clinical educators who contribute domain expertise to MedStar SiTEL education content.

Outreach Services connects faculty, nurse educators, administrators and other key educational stakeholders to MedStar SiTEL resources.

Continuing Professional Education develops and certifies credentialed education opportunities that are designed by and for the healthcare team.

MedStar SiTEL is part of the MedStar Institute for Innovation (MI2), whose mission is to catalyze and create innovation that advances healthcare. We work closely with our academic partners, including the MedStar Health Research Institute, the National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare, the Georgetown University School of Medicine and School of Nursing and Health Studies, and the MedStar Health Office of Graduate Medical Education.

MedStar Simulation Training & Education Lab Advisory Committee

We partner with distinguished colleagues and industry leaders to promote simulation-based training and provide safer environments for patients at MedStar Health hospitals. These include:


Jack Sava, MD, FACS
Director of Trauma
Associate Program Director of General Surgery
Jeffrey Dubin, MD, MBA
Assistant Professor of Clinical Emergency Medicine
Vice Chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine
Tamika Auguste, MD
Director of OB/GYN Simulation
Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Burton Lee, MD, FCCP
Fellowship Program Director
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Sangeeta Wood, MD
Director of the Simulation Program
MedStar Simulation Training & Education Lab
Sonya Malekzadeh, MD, FACS
Associate Professor of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery


MedStar SiTEL is accredited by a number of organizations. Read more here.



To create impactful healthcare education that transforms patient care and experience.