20191021 MDES Cardinal Health Project 27

CCAD partners with Cardinal Health to recommend surgical gown improvements

COLUMBUS, Ohio — A group of graduate students in CCAD’s new Master of Design program are working with Dublin-based Cardinal Health to recommend ways to improve surgical gowns.

Nine students in the Design Integration Studio III and Design Projects IIII classes are working on the project, which runs through the end of the fall 2018 semester.

Their goal is to build better gowns for surgeons to wear at the hospital.

Surgical gowns are worn by healthcare providers to provide fluid protection during surgery. These so-called “high-barrier gowns” can be perceived as hot to wear, especially during long surgeries. To help address this challenge, the students are looking at other areas of fashion to see what trends in new materials, comfort, style, and smart technologies can be incorporated to improve the gowns while keeping costs down for these disposable products.


Students in the classes will also go over commercial and governmental requirements for the gowns and how to do prototype testing. (Hint: There will be a messy class involving watermelons on Oct. 22).

“CCAD’s Master of Design program is all about using design to provide strategic leadership in business. Many sectors of the healthcare industry are recognizing the competitive advantage of this new leadership from design,” says Mercè Graell, Chair of CCAD’s Master of Design program. “We’re excited to partner with Cardinal Health so our students can gain experience leading highly strategic and complex initiatives for Fortune 15 corporations.”

The project with Cardinal Health, a global, integrated healthcare services and products company, is one of a number of partnerships where students in CCAD’s Master of Design program work to solve real problems for companies and nonprofit organizations.

At the end of the class, on Dec. 11, students will present their designs to experts on the surgical gowns Marketing team at Cardinal Health. The intent is to move forward with commercially viable and/or cost-effective solutions for surgical gown improvements.

“We are anxious to see the final presentations from this talented group of students at CCAD,” said Joel Colyer, global director of Portfolio & Regional Marketing at Cardinal Health. “To continue providing the high-quality surgical products our customers expect, we’re always seeking opportunities for improvement. And when we can think outside the box, and utilize partners like CCAD, we often find the most innovative ideas. Thoroughly understanding the customers’ experience — and challenges — with a surgical product allows us to adapt and modernize.”

To learn more about the work CCAD design students are doing for organizations like Cardinal Health, visit ccad.edu.

CCAD Prepares Students For Careers

You can find our alumni using their creative skills in small businesses, multinational corporations, nonprofits, and even in such fields as banking, healthcare, and insurance.