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August 7, 2014

UVA launches Children’s Hospital app and creates distributing mechanism for app-based intellectual property

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The University of Virginia Health System in collaboration with UVA Licensing & Ventures Group (LVG) launched the UVA Children’s Hospital app, a tool that will allow parents and families to personalize their hospital experience.

“Just as the Battle Building makes it easier for children and families to receive consolidated outpatient care, the new UVA Children’s Hospital app will make it easier for families to get information about the comprehensive care we provide,” said James P. Nataro, MD, MBA, chair of UVA’s Department of Pediatrics.

The free app, officially released on May 29, lists important contact information for accommodations, patient and guest services and allows access to UVA’s free MyChart electronic medical record service; features helpful articles; posts directions to the hospital, and includes a “Prepare for Your Visit” check list with questions that range from what to bring to a child’s doctor visit to the Children’s Hospital Patient Handbook.

“At UVA, we like all our patients and family members to have the best experience possible.  Part of that experience is having good information about what to expect and how to be prepared for your visit, before you come, while you’re here, and once you’re back at home. That’s the reason we partnered with a local company, WillowTree Apps, to create the UVA Children’s Hospital app,” said Rick Skinner, Chief Information and Technology Officer. 

The Children’s Hospital app is the first of its kind to be released under UVA Apps, LLC, a new mechanism to disseminate app-based intellectual property created at the University.  The UVA Mobile Development Program now provides development support for healthcare-related apps and the new entity allows for their distribution. The University has signed agreements with both Apple and Google Play stores.

“This app is the first of what we hope to be many more app-based innovations that will have the potential to change a patient’s access to healthcare and health information. UVA Apps, LLC, together with the UVA Mobile Development Program provide University researchers the technical support and legal infrastructure needed to distribute these innovations,” said Michael P. Straightiff, managing director of UVA Innovation and executive director of the UVA Licensing & Ventures Group.

The Mobile Development Program’s website ( ) offers a set of guidelines and a framework that will aid in the creation, development and distribution of app-based intellectual property. The program’s development support focuses only on healthcare-related mobile technologies, but will connect non-healthcare app ideas to other resources and developers. UVA Apps, LLC will distribute all app-based innovations. Two additional apps, Pegasus and Health System Docs, are currently in the works through the Mobile Development Program. 

“The real power in academic institutions comes when differing interests and ideas join in common cause and produce more than a sum of the working parts. The UVA mobile development program is a perfect representation of this principle in that it represents a cross section of computer science, medicine, and technology interests, working together to bring cutting edge innovation to our researchers, our clinicians, our students, and our patients,” said Derrick Stone, Mobile Development coordinator and director, Web Development Center for UVA Health System. “I am very proud of this program.”

The UVA Children’s Hospital ( ) app is free and available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

About the Battle Building at UVA Children’s Hospital

The 200,000-square-foot Battle Building at UVA Children’s Hospital is consolidating UVA’s outpatient care for children. It brings together hundreds of doctors and healthcare staff devoted to caring for kids and families into a building designed to place children at ease and promote healing. Children can receive primary care as well as care from pediatric providers in dozens of specialties, including allergy, cardiology, hematology/oncology and teen health.

About U.Va. Licensing & Ventures Group

The U.Va. Licensing & Ventures Group is a broad network of people, programs, and resources collaborating to maximize the impact of the University’s intellectual capacity and assets and to accelerate the adoption of University innovations.

About U.Va. Innovation

U.Va. Innovation is a pan-University initiative serving as a key driver of the innovation culture and entrepreneurship ecosystem at the University of Virginia. U.Va. Innovation also serves as the front-door to U.Va. for external partners, collaborators, investors, sponsors, and others interested in accessing or collaborating in the development of the university’s innovation assets.

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