MSUToday
Published: Sept. 5, 2019

MSU School of Packaging to host Healthcare Packaging Immersion event

Contact(s): Cimberly Weir cimberly@msu.edu, Laura Bix School of Packaging office: (517) 355- 4556 bixlaura@msu.edu

The Michigan State University School of Packaging will host the Healthcare Packaging Immersion Experience, or HcPIE, Oct. 9-10 at the James B. Henry Center.

This hallmark healthcare packaging event includes active learning and immersive experiences that provide powerful lessons for attendees.

When Laura Bix, MSU professor in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, thinks about 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 Bix and Mary Kay Smith, director of MSU’s Learning and Assessment Center, began working with professionals from the packaging industry to create the HcPIE, nearly a decade ago.

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.

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.”