Research for Design Project

Hi Everyone,

I am currently an Industrial Design student at the University of Cincinnati. This semester I am focusing on a project that involved creating a device + phone app system to foster the bond between parents and their babies in the NICU. I am considering designing the device so that it can be clipped to the incubator as well as worn as a bracelet. This device would monitor heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, temperature, sleeping patterns, etc. and all of this information would be sent to a phone app for the parent to through. This way the parents would be able to constantly monitor the baby even if they cannot physically be there, and without feeling like they may be irritating or bothering the nurses/doctors. The device would also allow for the parent to play music or recordings, show colors, etc. to the baby (based on the ideas of color theory, visual stimuli, and nurture). In order for this project to be successful I would love feedback from parents who have been/are going through this. If you have any suggestions to what could be needed and added, what may work/not work, etc. please feel free to reach out to me either here or my email: Thank you in advance for your help! I am very passionate about this project and hope to help foster the bond between parents and their babies that may feel absent when separated. 

2 Replies

  • In reply to Hunter and Randi's Mom:

    Hi Marissa,

    Thank you so much for your input, I really appreciate it. First off, I'm so sorry to hear about your daughter. I hope your son is doing well, I bet he is strong! Bringing in the nurse's role is a great suggestion and makes sense. I can also understand the feeling of helplessness that would surround this experience. Again, thank you for your input, it is very helpful and vital to the development of this project. I will definitely stay in touch about the development of this project and I wish you lots of good luck!

  • It is great that you are working on a project to help babies in the NICU and their families. This is just my opinion, but I think you probably want some coordination from the nurses - for example, the nurses could push a button that sends a message with a general update "had a good night", "call for an update", etc., and maybe the device can send pictures or video when the nurse turns it on, or allow you to put on music or visuals when you get a message from the nurse that it's a good time. My twins were micropreemies. My daughter passed away at 3 days old. My son spent 101 days in the NICU. I spent as much time as I could in the NICU. When I left I would check in before I went to sleep and when I woke up but otherwise I relied on the nurses or doctors to call if there was a problem I needed to know about. I would not have wanted to monitor my son's heart rate and breathing when I wasn't there because there were a lot of times that he stopped breathing and/or his heart rate dropped and I would have felt very helpless not being there and not knowing what was happening at those times. That said, my experience is different from others, and maybe the device would work great for babies that are "feeder growers". I would love to hear how the project evolves.