When you dedicate a significant part of your life to a noble cause for no other reward than the joy of helping others improve their lives there is no monetary prize that could do you justice, especially if you are already wealthy to begin with. So to truly thank its Health Heroes 2014, WebMD Health Corp chose to devolve all money prizes to their chosen cause and to present them with custom made 3D printed Awards by Ann Arbor-based professional 3D printing service Thingsmiths.
The prizes were assigned to individuals for meeting a health challenge and giving back to others, during a ceremony hosted by Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts. The winners’ line-up included modern day heroes such as Michael J.Fox, who was presented with the Hall of Fame Award for raising awareness (and over half a billion dollars) for Parkinson’s Disease.
Emmy Award Winning TV host Martha Stewart received the People’s Choice Award for her work on the Martha Stewart Center for Living at Mount Sinai Hospital, while NBC host Carson Daly took home the Philanthropist award for collaborating with non-profit group KidGardening.org to transform a concrete playground in Crown Heights into a teaching garden for schoolchildren.
They all shied away from being called heroes, pointing out how the real heroes are the healthcare providers who are fighting every day to help others. Some of them were present among the award winners. Dr Harold Koplewicz was honored with the Activist Award for proceeding accessible mental health care to children, and Dr Frank Papy was presented with the Scientist Award for pioneering a new surgical approach for treating cluster migraine headaches. Finally, Sarin Ibnat Rahmn, received the Prodigy Award for a study on teens’ use of computers and smartphones.
Custom 3D printed awards – especially in case of very special occasions such as WebMD’s – are becoming more popular: they offer 3D printing services an interesting area for business development and designers a way to express their creativity that also has direct commercial value. With all the recent contribution of 3D printing itself to the medical and healthcare industries, perhaps in the future a 3D printed awards will be presented to 3D printing itself.