An Initiative by the ETH Domain and Swiss academia

For medical professionals who require a short-term solution for their needs.

For medical professionals willing to provide feedback to our project teams.

For engineers, software developers, project managers or other people with skills in these fields.

For organizations with manufacturing capabilities which they could make available.


helpfulETH is an emergency research-initiative, which aims to provide short-term engineering solutions for needs in the healthcare sector caused through the current COVID-19 epidemic situation.

helpfulETH sets up project teams of volunteers that aim to solve needs within days or weeks, as interim relief.

How we work

helpfulETH operates as a Point of Contact:

  • helpfulETH is in an ongoing dialogue with Swiss healthcare providers, listening to their needs.
  • helpfulETH screens these needs for urgency, technicality, and feasibility and then defines them into project proposals.
  • helpfulETH thereafter activates its network of engineers, scientists, researchers, doctors, etc., for project leaders and project participants.
  • Projects are based on voluntariness and are self-organized. Results of the projects are implementable solutions (minimal viable prototypes).
  • helpfulETH has coaches who assist the projects and coordinate contact with healthcare providers for the testing of prototypes. 
  • Results are implemented as intermediary relief in healthcare and are published as open-source for those in need.
helpfulETH operates as a point of contact


The helpfulETH process covers three main stakeholders:

Product Owner: Person in the clinic who has the mandate to forward a need to helpfulETH and to provide answers to the project teams’ questions, test the prototypes and implement the solution.

Platform of support to screen incoming needs, find teams, and provide relevant expertise and industry network as well as a rapid prototyping network.

A team that develops (or finds) a solution for the need of the product owner, which is then tested and implemented in healthcare.


Healthcare Sector


Project Teams