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Hospital makerspace lets nurses build their own tools

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Makerspaces are great for bringing your gadget ideas to life, but they're not usually much help to nurses who may want to invent (or improvise) tools needed to take care of their patients. That's where the University of Texas' new, permanent MakerHealth Space might just save the day. Nurses and other workers at the school's John Sealy Hospital now have a dedicated area with 3D printers, laser cutters and other equipment that lets them create or modify devices (say, a pill bottle sensor) without leaving work. The facility sterilizes and reviews every product before it's put into service, so you shouldn't have to worry about a risky tool ruining your hospital stay.

This isn't the first makerspace anywhere in a hospital -- MakerNurse has a few mobile stations. It's the first permanent medical location in the US, however, and it raises the possibility that more businesses could benefit from on-site makerspaces. Rather than wait for your company to buy or develop the gadgets you need to tackle a problem, you could quickly whip up a solution that gets the job done.

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